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Smart Villages and the European Green Deal: making the connections

This document contains the personal reflections of Professor Bill Slee on the links between Smart Villages and the European Green Deal.

As an active member of the European Network for Rural Development (ENRD) Thematic Group on Smart Villages, he argues that smart rural communities are already providing many inspiring examples of how to address each of the challenges identified in the European Green Deal at local level.

A just transition is called for in the European Green Deal and this is explicit in the transformational changes observed among various types of smart communities - in ecovillages and in collaborative environmental partnerships addressing water quality and biodiversity, renewable energy communities, in local food systems, and initiatives for sustainable mobility.

Smart Villages focus on inclusive development. They seek to leave no one behind. They mobilise local communities and draw on collaborative arrangements with researchers to co-design more sustainable futures.

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