Empreendedorismo rural

Um tópico que tem ganho importância na minha agenda de investigação é o do empreendedorismo rural. Não só por via da investigação em empreendedorismo, através do arranque de um projecto de mestrado nesta área, mas também como consequência duma maior atenção conferida ao desenvolvimento em contextos rurais e economicamente desfavorecidos como o de Monção e de muitos outros concelhos. Daí que chame atenção, o facto do congresso de 2010 da European Regional Science Association dedicar um tópico ao tema. Tema que será coordenado pelo The Research Unit for Rural Entrepreneurship and Growth da sueca Jönköping International Business School e que se apresenta nos seguintes termos:

«In many rural regions resource based economic activities have lost a lot of their relative importance in terms of employment, also there has been an exodus of people from the countryside. Rural regions are often characterized by thin markets, in particular labor and product/service markets. The European common agricultural policy (CAP) is shifting focus away from supporting production and productivity in traditional agriculture, and instead increases the support of non-traditional farming activities and rural development in general. This policy shift also entails the usage of more environmentally friendly production methods and also to encourage farmers to engage in markets outside agriculture. The policy shift necessitates the farmers to develop entrepreneurial skills as in any other line of business. The policy comprises all people living in rural regions. Rural regions may therefore be defined, not by its sectoral composition but by socioeconomic characteristics that are peculiar to rural regions. Rural regions may be characterized as regions with low population density and long physical distances to different markets. But rural regions are not a homogenous group of regions, there are great differences in almost all types of measurements. As policy is shifting as outlined above “the entrepreneur” seems to be a vital actor gaining in importance. Thus, understanding entrepreneurship in a rural setting becomes more important when designing a successful policy aiming at rural development.»
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