Journal of Social Sciences

Is the LEADER Initiative a Real Contribution to Rural Development in Underdevelopment Areas in Europe?

M. M. Perez-Fra and Rosa Verdugo-Mates

DOI : 10.3844/jssp.2005.52.56

Journal of Social Sciences

Volume 1, Issue 1

Pages 52-56


he LEADER Community Initiative is a public programme that adopt on a local initiative approach, targeting rural areas as their field of intervention. The aim of this study is to provide elements for discussion regarding the applicability of such strategies for rural areas, which lag far behind European levels and to gauge the true bearing they have on the diversification of activities. The area chosen for the research is an Autonomous Region located in the Northwest of Spain: Galicia, which is a region which is considerably underdeveloped as compared with general European levels and where agriculture continues to play an important social and economic role. The two first phases of LEADER were applied in Galicia over the period 1991-1999, involving a total of 2,335 projects spread out over 13 different boroughs. In this study we carry out an assessment of the territorial effects produced by this Initiative, based on an analysis of the projects implemented and in the evolution of the main economic and demographic variables in these boroughs.


© 2005 M. M. Perez-Fra and Rosa Verdugo-Mates. This is an open access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.