Alltogether 33 villages applied and were accepted to participate the Finland's smartest village process.
The Smartest Village competition is organised by the Rural Network (European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development) in cooperation with the structural funds ESF and ERDF, the European Maritime and Fisheries Fund, the Ministry of Transport and Communications, the Rural Policy Council of Finland (MANE), the Association of Finnish Local and Regional Authorities and the Village Action Association of Finland.
What is going to happen next? These following steps have been decided:
- Facebook group: Villagers have their own closed Facebook group
- Facebook page: open for everyone to follow the process
- Trello: The villages are classified according to their main challenges in Trello. Also guidance is offered in Trello.
- Face-to-face meetings for smaller and larger groups
- Setting up Facebook group and Trello
- Possibility to attend innovation camp (focusing on rural services)
- Villages are offered three webinars on following topics: 1) clarifying objectives, 2) resourcing and 3) "from experiments to practice"
- Three regional events and one national event, where the villagers can introduce own ideas, test them, receive feedback, polish the plans and try to solve problems together with the experts. (Cooperation with KasvuOpen)
- Facebook group and Trello
- The winning village will be chosen by a panel of experts at the end of 2019. The selection criteria include higher service accessibility and quality, idea-rich solutions and the number of villagers actively involved.