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European Network for Rural Development

  • European Network for Rural Development (ENRD) has been established in 2008 by the General Directorate of Agriculture and Rural Development of European Commission.
  • ENRD is managed by ENRD Committee and Steering Board.
  • This Committee and Board give support for increasing the cooperation between the stakeholders in the rural development as well as guiding them.

National Rural Network
• to provide more efficient implementation of rural development programmes and facilitate them, • to provide the consolidation of cooperation and coordination processes needed among rural development activities, • to inform public and potential beneficiaries in a broader scale on rural development policy and financing opportunities, • to increase the information and experience sharing among the related institutions, economic and social stakeholders and nongovernmental organizations, to facilitate learning together and to strengthen the relations, • to increase the cooperation of stakeholders to the fulfilment of rural development, • implementation of rural development in the central and local level on the basis of governance, • harmonization of local and national priorities, • mobilization of rural development initiatives based on cooperation and partnership between different institutions (public, private, NGOs) servicing rural areas to strengthen rural development capacity and to provide the coordination.
Rural Network in IPARD

Development of cooperation between the stakeholders and Local Action Groups, built under LEADER approach which is very important in terms of rural development, as well as between each other. Providing the determination of rural development policies in a more participatory method allowing the contribution of different sector representatives and other stakeholders from rural (called as bottom up approach). This project assists the objectives as experience sharing between EU member states which already implement ENRD, establishment of cross border cooperation and dissemination of good practice examples. The fulfilment of this formation in the Pre-accession by Türkiye will strengthen the institutionalization related to rural development and governance experience.

Financing of National Rural Network
The activities of the network will be financed under the technical assistance measure of IPARD Programme
Which activities are included under National Rural Network?

  • Collection and dissemination of applicable project examples which made difference under rural development programmes
  • Sharing the thematic working groups, seminars, trainings, workshops, information meetings, focus group activities, information and experiences
  • Preparation and distribution of publicity materials – Facilitating the cooperation by establishing a communication network between Local Action Groups
  • Representing Türkiye for the cooperation activities on ENRD and other networks – Searching solutions for the determined problems.

Establishment of National Rural Network
  • Start-up Phase
  • Put into practice Phase
  • Maturity Phase
Start-up Phase
  • a) It is necessary to determine the important stakeholders, to elaborate the basic strategy and to specify the budget.
  • a) Basic strategy of the rural network is elaborated, target groups are determined (contact information of the stakeholders, e-mail addresses etc. are provided), activities are specified, administrative structure is decided, action plan and budget is prepared
  • c) ıt is important to make a good contact with ENRD
  • d) A steering committee made of stakeholder representatives should be established. This committee’s representatives’ way of selection and the rotation should be determined. How to specify the competence of the committee should also be identified.
  • e) Extraneous services should be expressed.
  • Basic Strategy:
    • • Target groups and the way to reach them are determined
    • Issues to be focused on in the start-up phase and in the future are specified.
    • Activities are identified.
    • Way of publicity is determined and the webpage is formed.
    • Expected results are expressed.
    Put into practice Phase
    • • Visibility is very important.
    • Including experienced experts to the studies for the formation of basic information is necessary.
    • If the rural network has been established by using the EU funds, people should be informed on this issue.
    • Self-assessment should be made before the submission of the studies to Monitoring Committee or an evaluation of individual team should be provided. Limited number of activities to obtain the results rapidly should be elaborated.
    • The attention of the stakeholders should be caught on the subject.
    • Good basic knowledge should be elaborated.
    • Basic trainings should be given.
    • Active contribution should be provided to ENRD.
    • Cooperation should be increased.
    • The feedbacks of the stakeholders should be taken on rural development plan.
    • Performance evaluation should be done.
    • Rotation should be provided for the representatives of the Steering Committee.
    • A new action plan and budget should be elaborated.
    Maturity Phase
    • The number of stakeholders should be increased. • The activities between the axes should be combined. • Working groups on specific subjects can be built. • Cooperation should be increased. • Contribution to the stakeholders should be provided. • A tool should be built for the negotiations of future rural development plan. • This network is not only for today, as it is about rural development, future should be taken into consideration.
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  • Resim Büyüt ilgili Siteye Git

Rural Network Lansman 28 November 2017



Rural development is vital for balanced and sustainable development of all segments in society. Social goals can only be achieved through joint and organised action. The key to development is to structure the rural area together and to protect the integrity of the local cultural values. National rural network aims at ensuring effective implementation of rural development policies as well as presenting new approaches for rural development. General understanding is based on exchange of experience through synergy, trust, and cooperation.

Rural development is a long and valuable path for communities. For the rural development policies and practices in the process of EU harmonisation, Türkiye has started to adopt an understanding which focus on local level participation instead of a centralised approach. Change in rural area will start from the local communities. The stakeholders in rural areas are able to analyse their problems and needs better and also can identify the solutions themselves. In this scope, skills, knowledge, and energies of local stakeholders are important resources for rural development for which a participatory approach needs to be developed. Good governance in rural development policies and practices is an important factor accelerating and facilitating development. In accordance with this approach, the aim of national rural network is to re-establish local, regional, and national rural development links in a stronger way...

An Innovation in Türkiye “National Rural Network”

The launching event for introducing the “National Rural Network”, which was being established for increasing the efficiency of IPA Rural Development Programme (IPARD) and to disseminate best practices to the stakeholders, was organised on 28 November 2017 in Ankara by the Department of Managing Authority for EU Structural Adjustment under the General Directorate of Agricultural Reform.

The launch event was attended by approximately 300 participants including the representatives from public institutions, universities, producer organisations, regional development agencies, local governments, NGOs, as well as 25 local action groups (LAGs) which had been established in 12 provinces under LEADER measure.

Mr. Muhammed ADAK, PhD. Head of Managing Authority and Deputy General Director of Agricultural Reform, pointed out the importance of National Rural Network in his speech during the launch event.

“The world is experiencing a very rapid change. It is necessary to protect and develop the values while determining the vision of development in the direction of the desired future, while ensuring integrated development of the rural areas affected by this rapid change and uncertainty. Rural development, in the most general sense, is the process of increasing the quality of life with the economic and social welfare of the rural inhabitants. Achieving such an objective requires a multi-dimensional and human-focused development approach, multi-sectoral public policies and inter-institutional cooperation. Bridging the cultures to each other, Anatolian land is very valuable. As a door opening to the East and West, the rural areas in these lands have always carried much importance for Türkiye with their fabric which is the basis for the creation and maintenance of our national culture in economic, cultural, and social aspects. In its transition path through national rural network, rural development will progress with the strength and energy taken from the rural and will realise the needed institutionalisation in cooperation with the central and local administrations.”

Muhammed ADAK - Head of Managing Authority and Deputy General Director of Agricultural Reform

For the purpose of creating synergy among different sectors to achieve the objectives, Ms. Züleyha ABDULLAYEVA ,PhD. was invited to the launch event. The artist, who has been conducting researches for more than 12 years on the effects and vibrations of music, is a graduate of the Academy of Fine Arts of Azerbaijan. She connects with the audience during her performance and transfers the vibrations of this energy into the notes and her piano extemporaneously.

The artist commented on this beautiful musical experience she provided to the invitees of the launch event;

“Ancient Turks had always invited a poet, a wise old man, or a grandmother while they were doing good jobs, taking new steps, planting seeds and they sang a beautiful song or read a poem. Why did they do like that? Maybe they did on purpose or maybe it was intrinsic but they always harmonised each beautiful step with music. Music is vibration. We are, everything is, vibrations. Nikola Tesla has an important statement related to this; “Those who solve the mystery of vibration may also solve the mystery of universe.” Like poets, grandmothers, I was also invited to this beautiful day which is an initial step to a huge start and I thought I was meant to be here. When I was on stage, I was not like me. Feeling the ancient Turks, I put unsaid things into the sounds and music as a hope for the best. I was also melted into the music. I felt a great approval and celebration from you and I transferred this into the piano. This step is a start serving our unity. What I felt with music was `we are one` and I feel lucky to contribute to this.”


Rural Development Programme and National Rural Network

National Rural Development Strategy (NRDS), which have been regularly developed starting from 2007-2013 period in the scope of EU harmonisation process, has vital importance for our rural development policies. NRDS provides the basis for two main documents on rural policy practice. These documents are the IPARD programme funded by the EU and the National Rural Development Plan (NRDP) implemented by the resources allocated from the general budget into rural development.

There is an important contribution of IPARD support in improving the living conditions in rural areas and increasing the appeal of rural settlements by strengthening rural and non-agricultural rural economies. On the other hand, a holistic approach is adopted in rural development policies and programmes through NRDP which was developed in line with the experience Türkiye gained in rural development policies and practices. NRDS is a fundamental document for ensuring coordination between rural development activities supported by various financial resources and for establishing and effective coordination mechanism for achieving the objectives in line with national framework.

The main purpose of the NRDS framework is to develop the rural community in its own region using local resources. Addressing local development in the context of rural development strategy will create a huge impact on the success of national rural development policies. Engaging regional development agencies in national rural development planning is very important for ensuring harmonisation with regional development plans and integrating the priorities at local and central level.

Strategic Goal 5 of NRDS; a need for bilateral local development capacity was determined in Capacity Building for Local Development section. One of them is to increase the institutionalisation level of local administration which provide service for the rural population; the other is to improve the capacity of local development actors for preparing, implementing, and monitoring rural development programmes.

For this purpose, local development measures aim at ensuring the institutionalisation needed for service provision at district level, development of innovative methods in service provision which take into account the new demographical structure and geographical disadvantages of the rural area, strengthening service provision capacity of local administrations, initiating rural development initiatives based on public-private sector and civil society cooperation and partnership for improving local governance, institutionalisation of civil local development initiatives, and establishing national network for sharing information and experience at national and international level for local and rural development.

Examples of thematic groups to be established

LEADER approach and LEADER network

As of 2010, capacity development activities has started to be implemented for ensuring a clear understanding of LEADER approach, encouraging the establishment of potential LAGs and development of local development strategies and getting the measure ready for implementation.

Currently, 25 local action groups have been established in 12 provinces. In order for the rural area to see its own resources, realise their values, NGOs, local governments, women entrepreneurs, young people, and farmers have met in a bottom to top approach to realise their dreams.

It is very important that the rural development activities are integrated in the light of requirements in EU harmonisation process and that the principles for the national rural network efforts are determined. Through LEADER networks, good governance will be learned and improved together at local level. For this reason, National Rural Network will help to the development of necessary capacity on LEADER measure and facilitate effective implementation of Local Development Strategies through organising activities for LAGs in line with their requirements.

The initial phase of these groups, which have arrived in the phase of local development strategies in their respective districts, is where a successful programme implementation and increase visibility are needed most. For this reason, networks which would mobilise local resources will be established for providing sufficient support from the central level to the local level, developing voluntary human resources, sharing experiences among various experts and individuals and for providing the support needed by the LAGs. The main purpose of the network which will be built among the LAGs is to integrate rural development efforts and to ensure a joint learning process by establishing communication and cooperation among the local communities. Establishment of this structure will contribute a lot to the sustainability of rural development processes

Involving stakeholders

Before starting the rural networking, it should be noted that the developed network is a ‘cooperation’ for the rural community and this should be remembered when working with the stakeholders. This level of awareness will contribute to the ownership and successful outcome of the rural network. Involving willing, specialised `volunteers` will facilitate the work. Any willing volunteer will be able to contribute to the work of this network and different stakeholder groups will be involved, thus stakeholders will establish horizontal networks among themselves through which feedback will be obtained from the stakeholders during implementation period. This will contribute to the development and improvement of appropriate programme. Participation in the activities of the rural network will be, in principle, open and equal.

Better programming and evaluation

The result of the study of the thematic groups to be established regarding the areas required for the development of the program will lead to better programming studies and contribute to more effective implementation. Within the framework of feedback from all stakeholders through the feedback mechanism, the relevant thematic group will conduct revision studies for more effective programming and more successful implementation.

Social inclusion.

The target groups of the IPARD Program, particularly LEADER approach, are the women and young people living in the rural area. The main objective is to improve the social status of these groups in rural areas, who are in disadvantaged position, and to increase their access to social rights and diversify their livelihoods. It is important that these efforts are developed with a link to LEADER measure in IPARD provinces and that their sustainability is supported. In the initial phase of national rural network, such work for the women may create an important degree of awareness. This work may include activities for more active inclusion of the women in the rural development works.

Local Action Groups

LEADER is a very valuable approach for developing rural policies through promoting local participation and partnership in the preparation and implementation of sustainable development strategies for rural areas. This approach has been included in EU Common Agricultural Policy through “Implementing Local Rural Development Strategies” measure and included in IPARD Programme in the scope of harmonisation for Rural Development Policy.

This approach means that local actors should participate in decision-making processes in relation to the projects to be implemented in their local regions and the strategy to be implemented, and promotes consensus, cooperation and solidarity through negotiation among actors. The biggest value to use as a leverage when realising these strategies is the participation of local people in decision making process. Implementation of Local Development Strategy (LDS) will be able to strengthen regional harmonisation and contribute to long term sustainable development of a region

Local Action Groups: From Past to Today

We expect that national rural network efforts will lead us into many innovations. The projects we will develop with our founding members are a step to success. Our association which was established with the support of the local community in Birecik will present any opportunity for creating awareness in various fields. In service for this purpose, our expectations from the rural network and LEADER are; regular training, information, visits for seeing best practices in Europe, and planning and implementing the work together. Our objective is to protect our local values, to preserve the historical and cultural beauty of Birecik, to show the importance of the endangered Hermit Ibis and to ensure their protection by the people, to inform the public more and to increase participation. Our local and traditional products are countless. We expect support for presenting our richness to the people through members. We would like to thank to the IPARD programme and the Ministry for this opportunity.

LAG comments from Birecik, Şanlıurfa;

As Nallıhan Local Action Association, we aim to strengthen rural tourism by protecting local products, cultural activities and natural heritage. We plan to increase awareness of the general public through organising fairs and seminars. We want to reveal the real potential of our region through good projects by strengthening the links of unity and solidarity among the people in our region. Rural Network and LEADER are enlightening our path for realising all this and are increasing our excitement. In the path towards realising the development vision of Nallıhan, it is necessary to share experience with local action groups in other locations, to seek solutions for similar problems, and to guide for developing road maps for future. In order to maıntaın sustainability of our association, we hope to carry out duties and activities by the members and local people. We expect more detailed information on how to conduct any work and procedures to be carried out by LAG in the implementation phase. We expect guidance from an expert when developing the action plans and strategies in LSD. As a result of this guidance, we want to support the local people and to help them grow in a better position and thus to create difference. We aim at carrying out project in participatory approach in accordance with the establishment objectives of the association. In line with this, we want to develop our LSD and contribute to the development of our district.

LAG comments from Nallıhan District;


National rural network will contribute to the integrated development of the rural area as well as increasing good governance while increasing competitiveness in the rural through organising vocational training and non-agricultural income generating activities and will improve social inclusion through gender sensitive approach. Public organisations and institutions, private sector, NGOs and universities working together will bring volunteers together and mobilise local initiatives, provide koint learning opportunities, will be an important tool for reform the rural development through exchange of experience and lessons learnt.

At the horizontal level, it will establish cooperation and communication among rural networks and economically will be a leverage for organisation efforts like clustering. It will also increase harmonisation to different plans and programmes through ensuring coordination between national and local rural development efforts. The network will have an important role for ensuring the highest level participation of the local people in the process of developing rural development policies at any scale.

We hope to interlace the rural dreams with these networks …..…




Rural development is essential for the balanced and sustainable development of all segments of society. The targets under rural development can only be reached by mobilizing together and organized. Rural development is performed with the cooperation of central and local offices in a balanced and organized way by shared structuring. .

This is the aim of “National Rural Network”. It also aims the provision of the efficient implementation of rural development policies as well as strengthening the bond among centre and local and the presentation of new approaches for rural development.

Centre and local met in OBASYA Rural Accommodation Facility built via the supports of ARDSI.

The Department of Managing Authority for EU Structural Adjustment of General Directorate of Agricultural Reform has performed the first meeting for the publicity of “National Rural Development” established under IPARD Programme to support the objectives determined in the rural development programmes and to provide the information and experience sharing among all the stakeholders within the implementations on 22 March 2018 in OBASYA Rural Accommodation Facility built with the supports of ARDSI in Yunusemre-Manisa.

90 participants from related public institutions, producer organizations, regional development agencies, local governments, nongovernmental organizations and representatives from Selendi and Gördes local action groups built under LEADER measure have attended the meeting.

Gördes and Selendi LAGs in Manisa

LEADER Approach, which is implemented to perform rural development via local rural societies, includes the economic activities of the rural areas as well as the social, cultural and environmental aspects. LAGs have been established in Gördes and Selendi districts of Manisa. LAG of Gördes has already started to work actively with its own means and has been selected as the central LAG among our other LAGs

Good Practice Example OBASYA Tourism Development Cooperative

President of OBASYA Tourism Development Cooperative Mustafa PALA mentioned about the importance of OBASYA.

Our Cooperative has been established to contribute to the development of tourism, particularly rural tourism, after observing that tourism was getting nowhere despite the historical and mythological richness and natural beauties of Manisa, prominent with its agriculture and achieved fame on industry in international arena. Yuntdağı Region is an area waiting to be put forward with its villages protecting their customs and traditions, Aigai Ancient City, Türkmen Waterfalls, monumental trees, nice air and natural beauties. We have members from all levels of society and different professions. We also have producing members. Some of our members carry on their initiatives to produce vegetables and fruits in the lands around OBASYA Campus. We think to make traditional village product festivals in this facility. Many projects as horse breeding, hobby gardens, archery will be carried into effect. As the managers of OBASYA Tourism development Cooperative, while we mention about our different projects in different meetings, we absolutely talk about IPARD and ARDSI. We tell about the support we take and the interest shown with pleasure. We couldn’t perform these projects without this support. We took the huge support of young administrators and staff of related institutions during the preparation and implementation phase of the project. They all worked to be the part of the solution not to be the part of the problem. Other institutions can also make new job descriptions, new assignments and interinstitutional coordination as in ARDSI and IPARD to increase production. Luckily we have EU, IPARD and ARDSI. Luckily we have these administrators and staff being part of the solution and taking to support people as duty

President of OBASYA Tourism Development Cooperative Mustafa PALA

We memorialized Merkez Efendi

Sümbül Efendi asks his students; It is incredible, however, if such kind of authority has been given, God created everything, God created the world, too, if it was possible how would you create the world? Each of the students’ answers are in his own way and Merkez Efendi’s turn comes, he says; - Sir! This universe, enormous work of God is so methodical, so perfect and everything is created in the proper place that it is impossible to think more perfect way. If such authority was given to me, I would change nothing and left everything in the centre! After that day, he is called as Merkez Efendi.

On 21 March 2018, the celebrations for Nawruz and the national rural network meeting in Manisa have gathered different sectors on rural development. The story of mesir paste, Manisa’s historical and cultural value and the symbol of love, tolerance, peace and brotherhood and also the story of its hero the big doctor of his time Merkez Efendi who marked 500 years as well as Sümbül Efendi were presented by the artists Çığla ÖZTAŞ and Volkan Fatih YILMAZ.

Çığla ÖZTAŞ and Volkan Fatih YILMAZ

Mesir Paste

Mesir, which was used as paste at first, became the symbol of love, tolerance, peace and brotherhood afterwards and connected with Nawruz, the spring festival. Mesir paste is being celebrated each year in spring as a long-standing tradition with several activities. Merkez Efendi healed Hafsa Sultan with the medicine named as Mesir Paste that includes forty one types of spices. Merkez Efendi’s fame has crossed the limits of the empire; therewith he has prepared a plan for contributing to the economy of Manisa via Mesir paste; • Organization of exhibitions on an exact day of each year and publicity of community’s handworks in these exhibitions, • Providing the economic and social mobilization of Manisa via the people coming from neighbourhood, • Protecting the health of people coming here and providing the distribution of paste for protecting the people eating the paste from poisonous insects’ stings during the year, • Providing the solidarity of community with each other by going through Gediz Plain of Manisa piedmont of Spil Mountain. The first meeting of national network has been carried out in Manisa, the province of unity and solidarity, and a janissary band show was organized by the Municipality of Şehzadeler to colour this fruitful meeting gathering different sectors on rural development.

We learned what it means to be in our centre…

The secret of our life energy is in our centre. Graduate of Azerbaijan Academy of Fine Arts and breath trainer Dr. Züleyha ABDULLAYEVA established an interactive bond with the participants and carried out a study on them about the centre of our body and the importance of this centre

The human has 3 centres: Mind, Heart, Belly (abdomen) namely thinking, feeling and existing Mind: A decision related to life is useful with our mind. However, if our mind is controlling us, it doesn’t benefit us. The decision taken via our mind is never exact. It is open to choices and mind creates discrepancies. Mind constantly comes and goes between past and future. Heart: It makes us happy, provides us to celebrate in our relations with each other and ourselves. It brings beauty and a world full of love. However, both our mind and hearth should be in balance. So, how will we provide this balance? In our Centre; our abdomen area (solar pleksus) and intestines (second brain) 5 cm under the bellybutton is the centre. We are balanced here. Many things start to change when we realize our centre. It is the centre of life. We feel ourselves as a whole. Without a centre, you make the ordinary works in your life, however, sense for innovation, production and unity increases in the centre. Person reaches maximum, his dreams and life in case he is in the centre. .

The meeting has been adjourned with the performer of Ministry of Culture Rhythmotherapist Volkan Fatih YILMAZ’s interactive study related to the effect of voice on the body systems having rhythmic frequencies with special echoes and cellular vibrations.

Hoping to have OBASYA in our centre……. Yuntdağı Region, where OBASYA Rural Accommodation Facility built with the supports of ARDSI, is an area waiting to be put forward with its natural beauties and fresh air as well as the villages protecting their customs and traditions, there are members from all parts and different professions of the society that make studies in order to perform these activities and to improve the investment they make. The studies for National Rural Network and LEADER in Manisa will continue to be carried out. When we succeed to be in our centre; The day is balanced completely and here, not only life but also existence, not sea but also ocean, not only me but also everybody grow.

We hope to interlace the rural dreams with these networks …..…

Republic of Türkiye Ministry Of Agriculture And Forestry
General Directorate of Agricultural Reform
Department of Managing Authority for EU Structural Adjustment
Eskişehir Road 9. Km, ANKARA/TÜRKİYE