Founded in 2019, we are a non-governmental organisation based in Britain and Ireland, dedicated to helping the rural community develop alternative ways of doing business in the 21st century. We conduct our business by consensus of participants and create action plans with key stakeholders and rural organisations across Europe. We identify current and future threats the rural environment, society and business and make policymakers and local authorities devise progressive plans to deliver solutions that make a difference.

The Future Economic Rural Network (FERN) serves as a hub for business growth and research on how communities across Europe can harness the power of technology and new ideas for a prosperous future.

FERN is not a membership organisation per se, but we will charge for entry to future events. Its work aims to engage and work with those who live in and wish to live in the rural environment and help devise ways to improve the current situation across Britain, Ireland and the European continent.

FERN supports the government, local, regional, national and EU policies aimed at increasing participation of community projects in rural and semi-rural locations.

The group also supports the implementation of British, Swiss, Norwegian and EU rural development programmes (RDPs) by creating and disseminating knowledge, as well as through facilitating information exchange and cooperation across rural and semi-rural locations across the continent.

FERN’s activities are in part supported and facilitated by our network of entrepreneurs, government advisors and through our accelerator programme, which works with rural startups.

Objectives

Our current set of goals are to help create innovative business activity in rural environments and support research into rural social cohesion. These objectives are maintained, in part, by the creation of;

  1. Increase the involvement of key stakeholders in rural environments;
  2. Work in conjunction with startups and high-potential growth firms;
  3. Help improve and build on existing literature already available;
  4. Support and fine-tune rural development programmes to maximise potential;
  5. Help create new media projects that can discuss rural development.