While Odemira is the municipality with the largest territory in Portugal, its interior has one of the lowest population densities in Europe. Over the last two generations it has lost more than 70% of its inhabitants due to major shifts in agriculture and lack of alternative opportunities. This results in an ageing population, dispersed over a vast area, affected by isolation and social exclusion (one of the world's lowest birth rates, and a dramatic suicide rate three times the national level). Its shrinking population leads to neglect of the land, the decay of infrastructure, and the loss of traditions, knowledge, and culture.
Our partner is CLARA, a recently established center for the rural future. They purchased an old brick factory where the center will be located. Their sustainable development strategy is based on three crucial components:
We partnered with CLARA to investigate the future scenarios of such a center for the rural future. Our main aim was to develop functions and activities alongside business models that will help the center to revitalise the economic and social fabric of the area.
Co-demira wants to bring digital nomads and people allowed to do remote work into peaceful surroundings of rural Portugal and offers them a co-working space and accommodation.
Clara Rural Camp is a service that connects urban children during their school holidays to older locals in the Odemira region.
Farm the Gap is a B2B farming membership service that connects urban and rural societies where companies can support sustainable farming practices and offer their employees a natural life experience.