Project objectives

The overall objective of the project is significant contribution to enhanced intellectual property in the disadvantaged cross-border area of Southern Slovakia and Northern Hungary with the establishment and dissemination of innovative cooperation structures as a practical implementation of soci(et)al innovation.
Specific objectives are:
- rehabilitation of the environment and economy of rural communities (local cities settlements and their agglomeration) with the generation and propagation of local sustainable employment;
- establishment and operation of a long-term knowledge (intellectual property) attraction and settlement programme with the involvement of external and internal actors;
- development of the attitude of local civil communities (inhabitants) with the development and dissemination of new life career models and options and new conceptual avenues, mainly in the field of sustainability and information and communication technologies.

Description of the initial situation

The project’s target area can be characterized as 'the periphery of the periphery'. The concerned regions belong to the least developed areas of the EU on the basis of almost all indicators, such as GDP/capita, unemployment, migration, low education level of population and intellectual capital.
The negative spiral of the cross-border area is worsening year by year and the lock-in situation can not be replaced with new development paths.
On the other hand, as regards international processes and globalisation, there is a tendency change in connection to rural areas, as the former agricultural and underdeveloped character is more and more alternated by a liveable, healthy and innovative character, symbolized by keywords as ‘glocalization’ and ‘rurbanisation’. Web 2.0, Globalisation 3.0, Industry 4.0, the Internet of Things and increasing digitalisation are global trends that shape our future.
Traditional rural development interventions applied in the past decades could not achieve significant results or impacts. The current project is a matchmaking tool between local and global processes and constitutes a unique opportunity to introduce a radically innovative approach in this disadvantaged cross-border area that provides new career models to the socially marginalized population. The project constitutes a joint effort of eight consortium partners with outstanding human capital and capacities (critical mass) to generate a new development path to the area.

Identification of the target groups

The target group of the project is socially marginalised local population in 3 counties/krajs of the cross-border area (Banskobystricky samospravny Kraj, Kosicky samospravny Kraj and Nógrád county). Roma population constitutes a significant proportion, the main focus is on population between the age of 5-18 age.
Direct beneficiaries (consortium partners):
- higher education institutions (SZIE, TUKE) academic staff and students
- research institute (HAS)
- civil organizations (ITA, ASTRA, e-Talentum, MVE)
- secondary education institution (Gimnazium Filakovo) students and teachers
Indirect beneficiaries (target group):
- students and teachers at local education institutions (from kindergartens to secondary schools)
- population and municipalities of the target settlements
- companies and their employees.
Involvement of the indirect target group will be ensured by the participation of project events, eg. trainings, summer camps, school clubs, awareness raising and motivation actions.

Benefits of the projects

Global tendencies represent new challenges to all communities, independently from its size, position in settlement hierarchy or geographical location. Answering these challenges is particularly difficult for small communities in the target area of the project at both social, economic and individual levels. Our main intention is to change the situation of the target group in a way that results increased the resiliency of local communities and individuals. We expect the following specific benefits:
- increased integration into global tendencies
- strengthened consciousness, alternative options (life career models)
- openness towards new technologies and global trends as Industry 4.0 (teleworking, digital nomads)
- higher value-added and critical mass of intellectual resources (VERDI-NET)
- increased reputation and visibility of the local social, economic and natural environment
- higher attractivity of the area to all kind of investment (financial, human, intellectual)


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