In a bid to catalyze rural development and innovation, Technology Center Freyung (part of Deggendorf Institute of Technology) recently played host to a gathering of stakeholders from across Czech-Bavarian borders. The meeting, held on April 23, 2024, brought together PoliRuralPlus partners Plan4all, CCSSand DIT to discuss pressing issues and explore collaborative opportunities.

Transforming Rural Landscapes

One of the focal points of the meeting was the ongoing transformation in the TC Freyung region. Historically known for its reliance on forestry, the area is now witnessing a shift towards a technology-driven economy. The meeting highlighted several ongoing projects that showcased innovative applications of digital technologies in diverse sectors ranging from economic developments to healthcare initiatives.

Collaborative Endeavors

The meeting served as a vibrant platform for collaborative brainstorming on pilot projects aimed at driving rural innovation forward. Discussions centered on the distribution of roles and tasks among participants to ensure efficient resource utilization. Key themes included the integration of AI in spatial data management, promotion of activities in national languages, and strategies to address climate change impacts on rural tourism. The importance of supporting spatial planning in municipalities and fostering innovation among young professionals emerged as key priorities.

Engaging Stakeholders and Fostering Innovation

Strategies for stakeholder engagement took center stage, with plans outlined for in-situ hackathons and community workshops. Of particular interest was the proposal to establish a knowledge hub on the Czech side of the border region, characterized by its high rurality, facilitating knowledge transfer between regions, potentially across national borders. Insights were also shared on digital innovation in rural areas, with Wilko Westphal presenting the Digital Innovation Project Ostbayern (DInO) as a beacon of progress in this regard, and a tour of the GREG Startup Support Center Freyung-Grafenau by Stephanie Fichtl, Managing Director, showcasing progress and support initiatives in the region.

Charting the Path Forward

The meeting at TC Freyung was an excellent starting point in the journey towards rural innovation. It served not just as a place to share ideas, but as a foundation for building strong partnerships focused on digital transformation for rural development. This gathering highlighted a shared commitment to growth and collaboration, establishing a solid basis for future initiatives that aim to rejuvenate and transform rural landscapes. This collective effort at TC Freyung sets the stage for impactful changes, positioning it as a beacon of progress in rural development.

TC Freyung projects Brainstorming