Rural Wales Local Policy and Innovation Partnership

The CCRI are part of a partnership that have received more than £5 million in funding to research and explore solutions to rural challenges. Funded by UK Research and Innovation, researchers and policymakers will work with communities from across rural Wales to explore innovative solutions to a range of major challenges faced by rural communities, such as the ‘rural premium’ on poverty where people on low incomes pay more than wealthier households for access to essential services.

The three-year programme will focus on the challenges of building a regenerative economy, supporting the net zero transition, enhancing health, wellbeing and access to services, and empowering communities and culture, including Welsh language revitalisation.

Dr Matthew Reed

Experts will engage a range of people in innovation labs to develop and test interventions, community-led research projects focused on local concerns, and dialogues to discuss critical issues such as land use and net zero. It will also collect new data through surveys and short studies, and the creation of an Online Integrated Evidence Hub for rural Wales.

Researchers from the University’s CCRI will work with colleagues from lead partner Aberystwyth University, Bangor University and Cardiff University, and partner organisations including the Centre for Alternative Technology, Represent Us Rural, Rural Health and Care Wales.

The Director of the CCRI, Dr Matt Reed (pictured), said: ‘It is great to be a part of this project. We have a strong and vibrant research relationship with our partners in Wales and long experience providing expertise to policy and decision-makers in Wales.

“The approach in this project means that we’ll be working with communities to create grounded innovations, which aligns strongly with our approach.”

Cymru Wledig LPIP Rural Wales,the Local Policy and Innovation Partnership for Rural Wales (LPIP), connects researchers, communities, and policymakers to support inclusive, sustainable development.

Professor Michael Woods, Director of the (LPIP), said: “Rural Wales faces significant challenges in growing its economy, providing good jobs and housing for local people, and maintaining services to ensure the wellbeing of communities.

“This is an exciting opportunity to bring together expertise from universities, businesses, the public sector and communities to work towards an inclusive, sustainable future for the region.”