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The observations and insights of PoliRural - Policy Value Chain

Copyright of the picture: Liisa-Maija Karlsson

PoliRural project is a Horizon2020 funded project that researches, innovates, and delivers novel solutions to future-oriented collaborative policy development for rural areas. PoliRural aims to intervene in the policy value chain.  

What is then the policy value chain?

This is my subjective interpretation of the policy value chain. It is shaped based on my experiences and learnings at PoliRural. It is rather ideal and optimistic. I trust that in real life the value chain is far more complicated and fuzzy. I have also doubts about policymakers' interest and ability to include into the process the diverse change factors (drivers, mega-trends, trends, weak signals), and multiple voices of the customers i.e. citizens and civil society.

However, this image includes the following components of PoliRural Pre-Foresight studies:

  • PoliRural partners have identified and described 64 Change Factors that are grouped in STEEPV-groups, that are Social-, Technological-, Economic-, Environmental-, Political-, and Value weighted change factors.
  • PoliRural 12 pilots have listened to rural inhabitants and rural development professionals on needs that echo diverse rural realities.
  • PoliRural 12 pilots have mapped policies that aim to impact on rural future and compared the policies to needs.
  • PoliRural has investigated, through local stakeholder panels, the SWOT situation in pilot areas. What are Häme region's Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats from the stakeholders' perspective?
  • PoliRural pilots have explored rural-related Key Performance Indicators (KPI) through System Dynamics Modelling and later we will define a locally adapted set of KPIs that are addressed to direct the rural policy value chain transformation. Imagine, we will monitor and assess policymakers' performance and impact on rural areas.

There are though a bunch of parameters and components that I have brought into the image but which are excluded from the PoliRural research e.g. the values and principles of politicians. They are out of the box, in this research.

As a result of Pre-Foresight studies, the HÄME pilot, just like the 11 other pilots, has acquired a better understanding of rural reality from the policy value chain and policy-making performance point of view. The Pre-Foresight phase purpose is to make observations and seek evidence on the environment. To understand what is the situation today, in order to be able to define a future vision for 2040.

The next phases of PoliRural research are firstly the actual Foresight phase and then to define the Post-Foresight.

The blog-writer, Tuula Löytty, is an HÄME-pilot team member, but this blog is a result of individual thinking. 


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The overall ambition is to design, develop and introduce a platform that which will be modified on the base of real experiences during the project and prepare complex solutions, transferable to pilots and other regions. In addition to that, Polirural DIH aims to offer a solution for the global promotion of pilots. This DIH integrated technology, datasets and libraries in one infrastructure with a complex user-oriented portal in the Web environment. The DIH can connect end-users with developers or researchers to improve the impact of the demo applications or case studies by short-chain feedback from end-users. End users can join larger communities around the DIH to get advice, cooperation potential and access to modern technologies utilisation.


Polirural DIH AIMS TO

Provide a social space for a community of practices

Promote pilots work and support access to their analysis

Promote existing best practices

Offer new tools and technologies for testing

Provide access to digital technologies and competencies

Provide access to infrastructure and tests digital innovations (“test before invest”)

Support effective data management

Provide development playground for map-based projects

Offer training and skills development

Help in networking and connecting users and suppliers of digital innovations