Our projects

Area-based development, a territorial approach to development

The DL in AEIDL stands for Local Development. With the principles of local development ("bottom-up", "integrated", "participatory", "partnership, "locally based", etc.) having found their way into all activities promoting the sustainable development of territories, AEIDL’s activities are increasingly covering the whole scope of territorial development, including rural, urban, local and regional.

From LEADER to FARNET, AEIDL has proven expertise in the successful application of the territorial approach to development - an approach based on a permanent dialogue with and between local stakeholders and the potential beneficiaries of the various projects, and enriched by exchanges within wider networks, which encompass the local, regional, national and European levels.

AEIDL's Rural and Territorial Development Unit gathers experts who foster community-led innovation by facilitating peer learning, co-creating and transferring of knowledge. The Unit also provides analysis and evaluation of relevant EU policies and advocates for an enhanced support to community local action. It acts as a knowledge hub to inspire and connect local and EU stakeholders.

Moving logo
  • Financing: Horizon 2020
  • Duration: 2020-2024

Visit  the website

MOVING (MOuntain Valorization through INterconnectedness and Green growth) is a Horizon 2020 project coordinated by the University of Córdoba. AEIDL is in charge of communication and dissemination.

The overall objective of MOVING is to build capacities and co-develop — in a bottom-up participatory process with value chain actors, stakeholders and policy-makers— relevant policy frameworks across Europe for the establishment of new or upgraded/upscaled value chains that contribute to resilience and sustainability of mountain areas.

MOVING will give regional and European stakeholders new collaborative tools for the definition of policies in Mountain regions.

The project will deliver a deeper understanding of how rural communities, territories and ecosystems are affected by stressors, about the most successful strategies in place and about the policy mix that might contribute to resilience and sustainability of mountain areas.

It will also provide guidelines for renewed policy options affecting the policy mix influencing mountain areas. These guidelines will be based on participatory citizen-science-policy approaches to develop evidence-based and performance-focused recommendations for the “next generation” of policy interventions for enhancing the connectivity, sustainability and resilience of mountain regions.

AEIDL is the leader of the work package on communication and dissemination.


transform logo
  • Financing: Horizon 2020
  • Duration: 2020-2022

Visit  the website


TRANSFORM (Territories as Responsive and Accountable Networks of S3 through new Forms of Open and Responsible decision-Making) aims to establish more open, transparent and democratic R&I ecosystems in Europe by integrating an RRI approach into Smart Specialisation Strategies.

Three regions (Lombardy, Catalonia and Brussels-Capital) will design, test and disseminate three co-creation methodological frameworks - participatory research agenda setting; design for social innovation; and citizen science - at the forefront of the implementation of the Smart Specialisation Strategy (S3).

They provide approaches and application areas of responsible and accountable territorial development through new forms of local decision-making, aligning science, innovation and society, and making R&D more responsive to citizens’ needs, concerns and aspirations.

AEIDL is leading communication and dissemination activities focused on maximising impact of the project and further uptake of the project results.



fi-compass logo
  • Clients: European Commission and European Investment Bank
  • Partner: Deloitte Tax & Consulting S.a r.l
  • Duration: 2018-2020

Visit the website

AEIDL, as part of a consortium led by Deloitte Tax & Consulting S.a r.l., has been awarded the fi-compass communications and capacity building contract for the European Investment Bank.

Fi-compass is the advisory service on financial instruments for the European Structural and Investment Funds (ESIF) and microfinance under the Programme for Employment and Social Innovation (EaSI).

Launched in 2015 by the European Commission, in partnership with the European Investment Bank (EIB), fi-compass is a platform designed to support ESIF managing authorities, that will progressively become the knowledge hub for ESIF Financial Instruments.

During the next three years, a team of 15 journalists from AEIDL supported by a pool will write articles and other news on a wide range of topics that will fuel the activities of the fi-compass community.

sherpa logo
  • Financing: Horizon 2020
  • Duration: 2020-2024

Visit  the website


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 will take 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 will contribute 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.




  • Client: European Commission, Directorate-General for Agriculture
  • Partners: Grupo Alba, IEEP, Metis, Rural Development Company
  • Duration: 2014-2020

Visit the website



The Directorate-General for Agriculture of the European Commission (DG AGRI) has contracted the RURANET EEIG, made up of five partner organisations including AEIDL, to manage the Contact Point of the European Network for Rural Development (ENRD) during the 2014-2020 period.

The purpose of the ENRD is to increase the involvement of all stakeholders (in particular in agriculture, forestry and rural development) in the implementation of the EU rural development policy; to improve the quality of rural development programmes; and to play a role in informing the broader public on the benefits of rural development policy.

RURANET is an equal partnership of five organisations with complementary skills and expertise: AEIDLGrupo Alba (Spain), IEEP - Institute for European Environmental Policy (UK), Metis GmbH (Austria), and the Rural Development Company (UK).

A permanent team of 21 full-time equivalents will work for the ENRD Contact Point, the first activities of which began in July 2014.

The ENRD Contact Point is in charge of three major tasks:

- Knowledge development

  • Analysis of Rural Development Programmes (RDPs) and their implementation
  • Animation of thematic groups

- Knowledge sharing

  • Website and social media
  • Publications (newsletter, magazine, periodicals, project brochures)

- Exchange and cooperation

  • Events (ENRD Assembly, sub-groups and steering group; National Rural Networks meetings; ENRD seminars)
  • Networking with National Rural Networks and other stakeholders
  • Cooperation with regards to LEADER and CLLD
  • Transnational cooperation

After LEADER (1992-2001) and the Helpdesk of the European Evaluation Network for Rural Development (2008-2014), this contract allows AEIDL to continue to be a key player in the field of rural development.