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Networking Of Small And Medium Sized Enterprises In The Countryside And Local Development: The Case Of Agricultural Cooperative Of Episkopi, Greece



    () (Department of Balkan Studies, University of Western Macedonia, FLORINA, GREECE)


In all European Union countries and in particular, South Eastern European countries, the countryside is undergoing significant modification, as a consequence of amendments that are taking place in the frame of CAP (the Common Agricultural Policy) reforms, the European Union’s enlargement, globalisation and the need to bring the population’s living standards closer to those of urban areas. It is widely acknowledged that, in the last decades, the countryside is being deserted on a continuous basis in search of better working conditions and a higher quality of life. The creation of conditions aimed at attracting people, and especially young people, to remain in rural areas can be supported by increasing the effectiveness of E. U. funds, local regional policy and development. Furthermore, SMEs that operate in these zones can exploit the innovative model of “flexible specialisation” and the networking strategy in order to increase their competitiveness and maintain their potential and as a consequence of this, contribute to the growth of regional economies that are at a point of crisis and restructuring. Agricultural cooperatives have a determinant role on the Greek agriculture and the rural society and economy. 6.350 Greek agricultural cooperative are regrouped to 118 unions of agricultural cooperatives. Agricultural cooperative is asked to manage the local agricultural production. Its social and economic role becomes much more important if the local economy is based essentially to the agricultural production managed by the cooperative. The paper examines the case of Agricultural Cooperative “ASOP EPISKOPIS”. This cooperative, created at 1924, has a determinant role in the local community since 90% of the local population is occupied on the agriculture. The cooperative’s examination is focused on its economic and financial results and on its influence on the local economy.

Suggested Citation

  • Elektra Pitoska, 2007. "Networking Of Small And Medium Sized Enterprises In The Countryside And Local Development: The Case Of Agricultural Cooperative Of Episkopi, Greece," JOURNAL STUDIA UNIVERSITATIS BABES-BOLYAI NEGOTIA, Babes-Bolyai University, Faculty of Business.
  • Handle: RePEc:bbn:journl:2007_1_4_pitoska

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    More about this item


    Networking; small- medium enterprises; countryside; agriculture cooperatives; regional economies;

    JEL classification:

    • P48 - Economic Systems - - Other Economic Systems - - - Political Economy; Legal Institutions; Property Rights; Natural Resources; Energy; Environment; Regional Studies
    • Q13 - Agricultural and Natural Resource Economics; Environmental and Ecological Economics - - Agriculture - - - Agricultural Markets and Marketing; Cooperatives; Agribusiness
    • R11 - Urban, Rural, Regional, Real Estate, and Transportation Economics - - General Regional Economics - - - Regional Economic Activity: Growth, Development, Environmental Issues, and Changes


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