RURALIZATION ProjectRURALIZATION is a European research and innovation project on rural regeneration. One aspect of the RURALIZATION project, funded by the European Commission under the Horizon 2020 programme, involves understanding the visions held by youth for their ideal or ‘dream’ future. Looking 15 years ahead to 2035, the research asks young people to imagine where they would like to live and work, as well as what ‘ingredients’ are important features of this future.

RURALIZATION is collecting insights through a short survey. The research is focused on those aged between 18 and 30 in two regions of Ireland, the Western region (counties Galway, Mayo and Roscommon) and Mid-East region (counties Louth, Meath, Kildare and Wicklow).  Taking part should just take about 10 to 15 minutes and responses are anonymous.

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The research is focused on the Western and Mid-East regions of Ireland as part of a balance selected across Europe. Overall, this research aims to reach 2,000 participants aged between 18 and 30 in regions across ten European countries. In Ireland, the research is carried out by the Rural Studies Unit within the Discipline of Geography at NUI Galway.

Looking towards an ideal or more ‘utopian’ future can help make changes in the present that enable realisation of a more desirable tomorrow. This type of thinking is increasingly seen to have relevance for policy. Future visions can uncover trends, signals and highlight obstacles to realising the preferred future and then can shape better policy interventions.  This research will feed into design of policy recommendations emerging from the RURALIZATION project that can support making the future dreams of youth a reality.