Smart Villages support in Czechia

How is the concept of Smart Villages defined?

There are formal definitions of ‘Smart Villages’ in Czechia: The EU definition of Smart Villages adopted in the Czech context: Communities in rural areas that bring innovative solutions to improve their resilience, and build on local strengths and opportunities. They rely on participatory approaches for development and implementation of own strategies for economic, social improvement and / or environmental conditions, in particular the mobilisation of solutions based on digital technologies.

According to the Leaflet of the National Network of LAGs: Smart countryside is about people who live in rural areas and take their own initiative in finding practical solutions leading to change and adapting to change in their territory. The goals are carefully balanced in terms of justice, efficiency, sustainability, social peace and necessity in region:

  • Digital technologies are only used when appropriate – not because they are fashionable. The smart countryside is adapting digital technologies to better serve the local community. A smart state will ensure that the countryside can apply these technologies (high-speed internet, adoption of relevant legislation).
  • Smart countryside is about thinking beyond municipal boundaries. Many activities include the surrounding countryside, groups of municipalities, small towns and also links to large cities.
  • Smart countryside also means supporting existing or establishing new forms of cooperation and associations: between farmers and other rural actors, municipalities, the private sector and civil society, as well as a bottom-up and top-down approaches.
  • Smart countryside also means thinking about yourself. There is no standard model or solution for the smart countryside – these are local people who take an inventory of local resources, use the best of available knowledge and take the initiative.

According to the Rural development concept (Ministry of Regional Development): “Strategic planning and management of rural development based on smart solutions that contribute to strengtheningrural competitiveness and to improving the quality of life of local people.”

According to the Smart Cities Concept – resilience through SMART solutions for municipalities, cities and regions (a document produced by the Ministry of Regional Development and approved by the Government):

The term Smart Cities involves the concept of strategic management of the city, respectively, municipality or region, including rural areas (for simplicity hereinafter only “Smart Cities”, “SC concept”, “SC” without further distinction). SC’s primary goal is to ensure the quality of life for their residents, using modern technologies as a tool and subsequently to achieve economic and social goals.

Smart Cities methodology

The main part of the methodology introduces the basic terms, objectives and structure of the Smart Cities concept. Details are given in the annexes. The methodology responds to the requirement of local governments and other actors to bring the material closer to its main users and tries to remedy the shortcomings of its original version – namely insufficient structuring and targeting at specific Smart Cities implementers, i.e. the problematic applicability in everyday practice, extensiveness and rather theoretical approach to the issue.

Is digital a key feature of Smart Villages?

Digitalisation is an important element of a smart solution, it is considered an essential element of modernisation in a positive sense. However, digitalisation is not seen as the main component, there is recognition that people are in the centre of the concept.

Is social innovation a key feature of Smart Villages?

People and their active involvement in life are an integral pillar of the smart concept in rural areas. With the help of social innovations, it is possible to stop the outflow of inhabitants from municipalities to cities and offer them to work in a place of residence and to have all the necessary services available in the immediate vicinity.

How is the CAP supporting Smart Villages?

Ministry of Agriculture (Ministerstvo zemědělství)

W: http://eagri.cz/public/web/mze/venkov/

CAP 2014-2020

Indirectly, no specific Smart Villages intervention.

  • LEADER/ CLLD

CAP 2021-2027

No specific information available at this stage.

Celostátní síť pro venkov (National Rural Network)

W: http://eagri.cz/public/web/mze/venkov/o-celostatni-siti-pro-venkov/

Zuzana Dvořáková, Head of the National Rural Network and Technical Assistance Department

E: zuzana.dvorakova@mze.cz

CAP Network support

Specific networking activities are organised on Smart Villages.

 

  • Thematic working group on Smart Countryside

Working group initiated by Local Action Groups (LAGs). Support for analyses/ studies, assessments, workshops, excursions, produces videos, publications and participates at various conferences and exchanges

  • Financing Smart Villages activities of different stakeholder organisations

 eg: conferences, publications

How are other policies supporting Smart Villages?

Smart Cities Working Group under the Government Council for Sustainable Development of the Ministry of Regional Development

W: https://mmr.cz/cs/microsites/sc/smart-cities

 

Zuzana Drhová

E: zuzana.drhova@mmr.cz

Yes, other policies have directly supported Smart Villages

Several local smart strategies have been supported by the Ministry of Regional Development in the past years. Smart objectives and initiatives at the local level are supported in the framework of the Regional Development Strategy of the Czech Republic 2021+, in thematic areas such as addressing environmental problems, climate change adaptation, etc. (covering both smart rural and urban areas).

Smart Rural 27 – Smart Villages Taskforce

No taskforce is set up yet

Smart Villages in Czechia

Want to get involved or know more on what Smart Rural 27 is doing in Czechia? Contact us!

Last update: August 10, 2022