Ing. Miloš Ulman, Ph.D. and Věra Motyčková MA as representatives of the PEF Department of Information Technology (KIT) participated in the first physical project meeting held in Montpellier, France on February 1-3, 2023. This meeting was the first opportunity for GRANULAR project partners to meet in person and discuss progress and activities that took place during the first six months.

Horizon Europe project Giving Rural Actors Novel Data and Re-Usable Tools to Lead Public Action in Rural Areas (GRANULAR), which will run for four years until September 2026, is implemented by 24 organizations led by the French Mediterranean Agronomic Institute of Montpellier (CIHEAM).

The project was officially launched on October 1, 2022, and its ambition is to create new datasets, tools and methods to better understand rural areas. Thus, GRANULAR wants to gain new knowledge about the unique characteristics, dynamics and driving force of changes in the countryside. Based on these findings and the rural compass, GRANULAR wants to help entities involved in rural development to design location-based policies that will be adapted to the specific needs of individual areas. Ultimately, GRANULAR wants to support rural entities in their efforts to promote sustainable territorial development.

In GRANULAR, KIT participates in activities aimed at developing tools and indicators for characterizing rural diversity, designing and implementing new methods, web scraping and nowcasting, and working with new open data sources for rural and Earth observation data.

During the project meeting, the participants also had the opportunity to visit one of the seven European pilot areas (Living Lab), which in the case of the French Living Lab is led by the Pays Pyrénées Méditerranée. The visit consisted of several stops where participants learned about trends and needs in individual rural areas regarding health, outdoor activities, mobility, environment and agroecology.

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