RURAGRI is an ERA-NET supported by the European Commission under the 7th Framework Programme (FP 7, CA 235175). The objective of the ERA-NET scheme is to step up the cooperation and coordination of research activities carried out at national or regional level in the Member States and Associated States.

RURAGRI aims to improve coordination between on-going and future European, national and regional research programmes dealing with the new relationships between rural areas and agriculture in Europe and the challenge of sustainability.

While the challenges and issues are mostly common, and despite of the historical coordination at the EU level for agricultural and rural development policies, research on agriculture and rural development is mostly carried out at a national level and remains fragmented. Research funding bodies from 20 European member states and associated countries have set up RURAGRI in order to develop a lasting focused network that will identify and open new research fields. The partners work towards a common research agenda to enhance coordination of research in the field of agriculture and rural development. A fundamental aspect of this ERA-NET will be to identify and implement trans-national activities.

Throughout Europe, the strong urban movement leads to increased requirement for improved connectivity between urban and rural areas. The geographic, economic and human dynamics of all European rural areas are increasingly influenced by urban development. RURAGRI aims for a better understanding of new interactions between agriculture and other land uses in order to reach a sustainable rural development within the diverse EU regions and between them at the European scale. This European approach benefits from understanding the institutional and governance approaches necessary to optimize land use and support strengthening existing and future territorial resources, in order to contribute to a sustainable rural development.

RURAGRI consists of 24 partners from 20 European member states and associated countries. RURAGRI started on the 1st October 2009 and will run until 31stMarch 2014. The overall EC funding is app. 1 mio €.