Representing 30% of its population and over 80% of its territory, EU rural areas are facing simultaneous demographic, climate, economic, social and environmental changes which affect their characteristics and metabolisms. Responding to these challenges requires a precise understanding of what rural areas are and what rural communities are facing nowadays. 

Definitions of rural areas tend to lean on population density or size. They do not provide sufficient insights into the dynamics, drivers and fluidity of contemporary diverse rural-urban relations and identities that characterize ruralities across Europe. Despite the increasing acknowledgement that rural areas are diverse and that typologies should better reflect the identities of such territories, the lack of data at a fine scale prevents such innovations. Departing from an updated conceptualisation of rurality based on the multi-dimensional nature of contemporary rural-urban interrelations and interdependencies, GRANULAR will generate new insights for characterising rural diversity based on a multi-actor and interdisciplinary approach. 

Based on insights from Multi-Actor Labs, GRANULAR will generate novel datasets using a wide range of methods and primary data, such as remote sensing, crowd-sourced data, mobile phone data and web-scraping. This data will then be combined with a variety of existing institutional data to derive indicators relevant to rural communities for the implementation of the Long-Term Vision for Rural Areas (LTVRA), so to measure resilience, well-being, quality of life and attractiveness. 

This will enable GRANULAR to create a Rural Compass, that take into account the factors affecting rural communities and their functional characteristics, informing policymakers and rural actors for the design of tailored rural policies. After ensuring the up-scalability of the results, datasets, data visualization and other tools will be directly available on a dedicated platform designed by and for rural actors.

Projects in Rural and Territorial Development (RTD)


RURBANIVE - RUral-uRBAN synergies emerged in an immersIVE innovation ecosystem


SMART ERA - SMART community-led transition for Europe's Rural Areas


Development of step-by-step guidelines for participatory Digital Villages Initiative roadmap design and a practical toolkit


RPSO - Rural Pact Support Office


GRANULAR - Giving Rural Actors Novel data and re-Useable tools to Lead public Action in Rural areas


SafeHabitus - Strengthening Farm Health and Safety Knowledge and Innovation System Assessing and improving labour conditions and health and safety at work in farming


Empowering Rural Communities to Act for Change


Empowering the FUTure though innovative Smart Solutions for rURAL areas

GRASS Ceiling

GRASS Ceiling - Gender Equality in Rural and Agricultural Innovation SystemS



Tools4CAP - Innovative Toolbox empowering effective CAP governance towards EU ambitions


CODECS - Assessing the impacts of digital technologies in agriculture – Cost, benefits, and potential for sustainability gains

BEATLES - Uncovering lock-ins and levers to encourage farmers to move to and stay in sustainable, climate-neutral and biodiversity-friendly farming systems: from experiments to systemic mechanisms


Service Contract for Establishing and Running FAME-NET

MOVING (2020-2024)

MOVING - Building modern rural policies on long-term visions and societal engagement - MOuntain Valorisation through INterconnectedness and Green Growth


Contract for Networking Activities in Support of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) - Lot 1:Support for networking concerning the design and implementation of CAP strategic plan (CAP NETWORK)