Local partnership as an incubator for rural development: the case of Debrzno, North-Western Poland
[Lokale Partnerschaft als Inkubator für ländliche Entwicklung: Das Beispiel Dębrzno, Nordwestpolen]
Since the beginning of the 1990s, the gap in economic development between rural and urban regions in Poland has continuously grown. Increasing income disparities and the lack of job opportunities have already led to an outflow of young people out of and an increasing obsolescence in rural areas. As successful examples in different Polish regions show, endogenous initiatives may have a lasting impact on the economic development of rural areas and are able to counter the mentioned effects. This paper presents the results of a case study which analyses endogenous initiatives in the commune D?brzno, Pomorskie voivodship, Poland. The case study results primarily rely on open interviews conducted with inhabitants, representatives of the local government, and members of a local development association. A major problem for the region is the high unemployment rate, due to the shutdown of the local state farms and the local military base. To respond to this problem a local development association was founded in 1998. First results of the association's activities are, amongst others, the foundation of a local business start-up agency and a local labour agency. The association was also the main initiator of the regional Partnership of the Northern Necklace, which created an 870 km long bike trek, founded a local brand, and organized different workshops for rural inhabitants. On the way to develop the association's activities, the trust local inhabitants hold in the association members, the undertaken promotional actions in order to activate inhabitants, as well as the close cooperation with the local government turned out to be important success factors. In 2004, the association together with representatives of ten other communes applied for the pilot measure to implement the Community Initiative Leader+. Already conducted conferences with potential partners of a future Leader-type local action group, experience with endogenous initiative within the association and the Partnership of the Northern Necklace, as well as the high level of knowledge the involved partners have about Leader-type projects constitute promising preconditions for a successful implementation of the pilot measure in the region.
|Date of creation:||2006|
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