SHERPA – Sustainable Hub to Engage into Rural Policies with Actors

SHERPA (Sustainable Hub to Engage into Rural Policies with Actors) is a four-year project funded by the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme and is coordinated by ECORYS Brussels. AEIDL is leading the work on stakeholder engagement, communications and dissemination and contribute to the rest of the activities of the project with its expertise on rural development.

Uniting 17 partners from all over Europe, the project aims at engaging citizens, stakeholders, scientists, and decision-makers in formulating recommendations with the ambition to redefine European development policies and the research agenda for rural areas.

The interaction between research, policy and citizens takes place in up to 40 Multi-Actor Platforms (MAPs) set up in 20 Member States and in a MAP at EU level.

The SHERPA rural citizens-science-policy hub contributes to policy development in three areas:
– providing inputs for the design of future research policies;
– supporting the implementation of policies relevant to rural areas in the 2021-2027 programming period;
– helping set the direction of rural policies in the next programming period (after 2027).

A key outcome of the project will be the development of position papers that will provide policy recommendations on specific thematic areas, on the basis of previous research and the local input of the MAPs.

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)