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Leader areas in Sweden 2007–2013


Leader in Sweden is now well underway. An impressive 63 Leader areas have been established and are now active throughout Sweden’s rural areas. Leader has proven itself to be a successful method for developing the possibilities of rural areas.

Leader areas in Sweden 2007–2013

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The strength of the Leader approach is its deeply rooted local perspective and focus on cross-sectoral cooperation. The partnership in LAG, Local Action Group, combines the responsibility of the public sector with the efficiency of the private sector and the commitment of the non-profit sector.

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Creative, enterprising people are essential and are a prerequisite for continued development. Leader makes it possible to renew and foster enterprise and encourage business initiatives throughout rural Sweden.


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In this Leader catalogue you can read about all of Sweden’s Leader areas. This makes an impressive read, with visions for a flourishing, healthy countryside with healthy companies and attractive housing and living conditions. You can also see the priorities of the various Leader areas, from the climate, entrepreneurship, added value processing and adventure tourism to youth participation and changed attitudes.

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I very much look forward to seeing what Leader will achieve over the next few years. The commitment and opportunities are already there. I’m certain that they will produce results. Read on and be inspired!



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Mats Persson Director General, the Swedish Board of Agriculture







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Table of Contents 33. Leader Närheten...........................................68 34. Leader Växtlust Värmland..........................70 35. Leader Norra Skaraborg.............................72 36. Leader Dalsland och Årjäng.....................74 37. Leader Ranrike Norra Bohuslän...............76 38. Leader Terra et Mare....................................78 39. Leader Göta Älv.............................................80 40. Leader Göteborgs Insjörike......................82 41. Leader Västra Skaraborg............................84 42. Leader Östra Skaraborg.............................86 43. Leader Sommenbygd.................................88 44. Leader Astrid Lindgrens Hembygd........90 45. Leader Kustlandet........................................92 46. Leader KalmarÖland....................................94 47. Leader Västra Småland...............................96 48. Leader Mitt i Småland.................................98 49. Leader Sjuhärad......................................... 100 50. Leader Kustbygd Halland....................... 102 51. Leader Landsbygd Halland.................... 104 52. Leader Linné................................................ 106 53. Leader Småland Sydost........................... 108 54. Leader Skånes Ess...................................... 110 55. Leader Blekinge......................................... 112 56. Leader Skåne Nordväst Norra............... 114 57. Leader Skåne Nordväst Södra............... 116 58. Leader Lundaland..................................... 118 59. Leader Lag PH i Snapphanebygd........ 120 60. Leader MittSkåne...................................... 122 61. Leader Ystad-Österlenregionen........... 124 62. Leader Söderslätt...................................... 126 63. Leader Gotland........................................... 128 Leader creates development!...................... 130

Editorial.....................................................................2 1. Leader Polaris.....................................................4 2. Leader Mare Boreale........................................6 3. Leader Tornedalen............................................8 4. Leader URnära..................................................10 5. Leader Spira Fyrkanten.................................12 6. Trekom Leader.................................................14 7. Leader Höga Kusten.......................................16 8. Leader Lappland.............................................18 9. Leader Timråbygd...........................................20 10. Leader Sollefteå............................................22 11. Leader 3sam...................................................24 12. Leader Storsjöbygden................................26 13. Leader Åres Gröna Dalar............................28 14. Leader Mittland.............................................30 15. Leader Hälsingebygden.............................32 16. Leader Södra Fjällen....................................34 17. Leader DalÄlvarna........................................36 18. Leader Falun–Borlänge..............................38 19. Leader Gästrikebygden..............................40 20. Leader Nedre Dalälven...............................42 21. Leader Upplandsbygd................................44 22. Leader UROSS................................................46 23. Leader Gränslandet.....................................48 24. Leader Bergslagen.......................................50 25. Leader Norra Mälarstranden....................52 26. Leader Södertälje Landsbygd..................54 27. Leader Västra Mälardalen..........................56 28. Leader Inlandet.............................................58 29. Leader Kustlinjen..........................................60 30. Leader Folkungaland..................................62 31. Leader Mellansjölandet..............................64 32. Leader Värmlands BergsLAG....................66


1. Leader Polaris The Leader Polaris area is located to a great extent north of the Artic Circle and is richly endowed with lakes and running water. The entire western section comprises high-fell areas, while the connecting links are the completely unregulated Kalix Älv river, which does not have hydroelectric plants, the regulated River Luleå, the E10 highway and the Malmbanan railway, used for carrying iron ore. Our local business sector is largely oriented towards utilising existing resources, either open-air tourism or mining and its associated service functions. Our local land-based businesses are largely in the fields of forestry and reindeer herding. The Leader Polaris area has around 66,000 inhabitants, comprising the municipalities of Gällivare, Jokkmokk and Överkalix as well as parts of the municipalities of Kiruna and Kalix.

the larger villages there will be groups and organisations that help generate new ideas and develop them. The entire area is to be characterised by a forward-looking approach, creativity and optimism with regard to the future.

Our priorities • Communications, infrastructure and IT: utilising broadband networks for communications and marketing, developing ideas and ways of using modern technology and new solutions for small-scale infrastructure and transport solutions. • Innovation and entrepreneurship: developing new products and services based on land, forests, water and iron ore, widening the business sector associated with reindeer herding through cultural activities, tourism, handicrafts and food product development.

Our vision

• Experience, nature and culture tourism: developing nature tourism through experiencing nature in various ways, and developing a small-scale visiting industry and experience industry aimed at both local and international markets.

Our area will become an attractive place to live in, with the aid of new communication and service solutions. It will be just as easy to run a business here as in the cities. New companies will start up and existing companies will grow stronger. A conscious commitment will be made to developing and marketing new products that possess a distinctive local character. Visitors from all over the world will come to the area to enjoy its natural and cultural values. In all

• Visibility and marketing: giving priority to attitudecreating activities; developing skills, competence and quality within local marketing and spotlighting the area.




The past is the key to the heart of this area and its future 5

2. Leader Mare Boreale Mare Boreale is Latin and means the Sea of the North Wind. The area comprises the coastline and archipelago between Haparanda and Skellefteå and is bound together by factors such as the shallow brackish waters of the archipelago, partially low accessibility, the coastal fishing tradition and the partly protected cultural and natural sites, the sea ice and the Northern Lights. Today, forestry is actively practised along the coast and on the larger islands, while fishing and reindeer herding are also undertaken. Industry is also strong in certain places thanks to its location close to harbours and former transportation routes. The area has many closed down industrial sites located in attractive settings, as well as major potential for outdoor leisure activities, recreation, hunting and sports fishing. Around 36,000 people live in the Mare Boreale area, which includes islands, coastline and coastal districts in the municipalities of Skellefteå, Piteå, Luleå, Kalix and Haparanda.

services and other living environmental factors vital to the establishment of local sustainable development. We will also create many new opportunities to ensure a living area all year round within the most northerly archipelago of the European Union.

Our priorities • Developing local attractivity through the nature and environment: creating a holistic view of the landscape, protecting and developing its attractivity, local administration and new ways of administering natural resources. • Economic growth in the business sector and the visiting industry: stimulating entrepreneurship, contributing to international awareness of the area and enhancing its appeal through high quality and excellent customer relations. • Awareness of local qualities and distinctiveness: stimulating skills and competence development as well as external analyses to gain knowledge and experience, setting up meeting-places for young people with the emphasis on education/training and enterprise culture.

Our vision

We will use local natural and cultural values to enhance the year-round attractivity of the coastline to residents, visitors and the business sector. A platform is in place for collaboration among various actors and activities, with which we can provide new opportunities for employment, housing,

• Infrastructure: improving access and finding long-term solutions for the maintenance of small-scale infrastructure.


Promoting collaboration within the coastline and archipelago of the Bay of Bothnia 7

3. Leader Tornedalen The nature in the north of the Tornedalen area resembles the tundra and is characterised by a low-fell district with extensive marshlands. In the southern parts, the soils are more fertile with a forested landscape. Down towards the Bay of Bothnia, the river valleys have gradually formed excellent agricultural land. Tornedalen contains a multitude of river systems, of which the most important are the Torne Älv and Kalix Älv rivers. Both of these are unregulated, without hydroelectric plants, and empty into the Bay of Bothnia. Historically, these rivers have always played an important role, both as a means of transport and with regard to the business sector on account of the productive fishing industry and the fine conditions for agriculture, forestry and commerce. Our rural areas have many small villages and smaller settlements and the local business sector consists primarily of small companies. Agriculture, forestry, tourism and education/training are other important local sectors. Around 23,000 people live in the Leader Tornedalen area, which comprises the municipalities of Pajala and Övertorneå as well as parts of the municipalities of Kiruna and Haparanda.

collaborate with external networks in the fields of population growth and the business sector. Tornedalen will be a familiar concept and a trademark with a positive and exotic content.

Our priorities • Local commitment and collaboration: developing social services and infrastructure, stimulating population influx, and designing regularly held public events that promote local solidarity and commitment as well as attracting new target groups to the area. • Quality of life: highlighting valuable and distinctive features, focusing on unique and valuable local waterways and showing the Tornedalen nature to visitors interested in fishing, hunting and wilderness experience. • Entrepreneurship and the business sector: developing the business climate, stimulating an enterprise culture among the young and training entrepreneurs in packaging and selling local products. • Alternative energy production: giving priority to information and educational measures relating to energy supplies and renewable energy on the basis of local conditions.

Our vision

In our vision, the inhabitants will feel a sense of community and a common desire to develop the area and they will


Local development through commitment and enthusiasm 9

4. Leader URnära The nature in the Leader URnära area consists primarily of forests full of life that extend for miles and exhibit a great diversity of species, while they are also of great importance to the business sector. The relatively high proportion of cultivated land is also typical of this region. The area has sixty nature reserves and a large number of cultural sites and remainings from ancient settlements and prehistoric life. The region surrounding the city of Umeå shows a high rate of growth and its amenities include two universities, a dynamic business sector and a viable rural area. The predominant commercial fields are manufacturing, commerce and communications, in addition to agriculture and forestry. More than 70% of both men and women are gainfully employed. Around 66,000 people live in the Leader URnära area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Bjurholm, Nordmaling, Robertsfors, Umeå, Vindeln and Vännäs.

Our priorities • The local business sector: enhancing existing companies and creating conditions for new ones • Knowledge and attitudes towards the business sector: stimulating co-operation and experience exchange between rural companies and education/training and research. • Diversity with an emphasis on integration: integrating immigrants in all development efforts as well as involving more women and young people in the development activities and projects. • Youth participation: stimulating young people’s creativity and together finding new solutions to old problems. • Environmental awareness among entrepreneurs and local inhabitants: emphasising new, innovative and local solution directed towards a sustainable region. • The natural and cultural landscape: preserving and developing regional nature and culture.

Our vision

Our rural area will flourish and have an active and competitive business sector based on its unique conditions and regional identity. A diversified and multi-faceted business sector will be established within a living rural area with the aid of functional solutions where all individuals feel involved in creating sustainable growth.

• An attractive region: developing an attractive and functioning environment that results in an influx of newcomers, designing accessible commercial and public services. • National and international co-operation: learning through national and international co-operation that can be transformed into know-how and action.


A flourishing rural area with an active and competitive business sector 11

5. Leader Spira Fyrkanten The Leader Spira Fyrkanten area in the county of Norrbotten is one of rivers and forests that historically has been characterised by forestry, the sawmill industry, iron foundries, log floating and small farms. Even today, the local industries are based on land, forest and waterpower. Along the river valleys, the forests are still highly important to the business sector. Closer to the coast, the forest give way to productive agricultural land and the area supplies a large proportion of the food produced in the county. Several tourist companies active in the river valleys are rooted in nature with activities such as fishing, hunting and outdoor activities. The Swedish word “Spira” in the name of this area means “shoot” or “sprout”, and it refers to both the plants that grow from the local soils, and to the forests, as well as to thoughts, ideas, community and a spirit of enterprise. Around 26,000 people live in the Spira Fyrkanten area, which comprises the municipalities of Boden and Älvsbyn as well as parts of the municipalities of Luleå and Piteå.

Our vision

business development, which will benefit from and use the potential of our local assets in the form of forests, land and rivers.

Our priorities

• Attractivity based on natural and cultural values: giving priority to cross-boundary collaboration, commercial exchanges between tourism entrepreneurs and the development of new products and packages within the visiting industry. • Entrepreneurship and business initiatives based on the land, forests and rivers: establishing networks, developing new products and companies based on the natural assets of the land, forests and rivers, making use of the creativity and spirit of enterprise of children and young people. • A positive living environment for the inhabitants: developing services and housing, improving infrastructure and communications. • Youth participation in the local community: facilitating and inspiring youth participation in the democratic processes of voluntary associations, companies and the political sphere, developing local meeting-places and facilitating learning across generational boundaries.

Rooted in its land, forests and rivers, our area will be permeated by entrepreneurship, creativity and openness, which attract people as well as companies and allow them to live and prosper. We will have a local business sector that is highly competitive, as well as increased growth and employment. We will also create and provide conditions for


Where the land, forests and rivers create possibilities


6. Trekom Leader The strengths of the Trekom Leader area include the environment and the nature. It extends from the coast to the fells and has been reindeer pasture for a great many centuries. It has long been dominated by the base industries mining and forestry, which are still important driving forces within the local business sector. Thanks to our geographical position, our natural resources and remoteness, our area has major potential for the development of tourism. Our local inhabitants are also a key factor on account of their drive and commitment. We have a very dense network of voluntary associations that demonstrate an ability to collaborate and a willingness to be supportive and to assist both at a local level as well as within the entire area. Around 34,000 people live in the area of Trekom, which comprises the municipalities of Malå and Norsjö as well as parts of Skellefteå Municipality.

Our vision

By 2013 the population of the area will have increased by 1%, which means that we will have a greater number of people who thrive, live and make their living in the countryside. Business activities will be promoted, as will social services, integration and gender equality, so that the busi-

ness sector and social services can develop and generate more jobs. There will be a greater influx of newcomers and young people, men and women will feel impelled to continue living in the area. Creativity and innovative thinking will be strengthened in order to promote growth.

Our priorities • Nature and environment: enhancing the asset that is our varied nature, with its distinct seasons, access to fishing waters, hunting grounds, farmland and reindeer pasture. • Business sector: stimulating the development of entrepreneurship to launch more companies and create better employment prospects. • Housing and population: efforts to enhance the area’s attractivity so that more people will move here. • Infrastructure and social services: finding new solutions for maintaining social services in sparsely populated areas. • Attitudes: stimulating skills and competence development, information and knowledge dissemination in order to promote positive attitudes within and towards rural areas.


Creativity and innovative thinking in rural development 15

7. Leader Höga Kusten The area of Höga Kusten is characterised by agricultural and forestry land that have an outstanding natural and cultural heritage, with unique environments, shaped over thousands of years: the landscape, once weighed down by ice, that is now rising; the extensive forests, water, tranquillity and vast, sparsely populated areas. The town of Örnsköldsvik and the coastal area of Kramfors municipality are dominated by the business sector that ranges from small companies to major manufacturing industries. The valley of Ångermanälven, known as Ådalen, has previously had large factories and sawmills, while the town of Härnösand is dominated by the service and educational/ training sectors as well as public administration. Around 47,000 people live in the Leader Höga Kusten area, which comprises the municipalities of Härnösand, Kramfors and Örnsköldsvik, excluding their respective town centres.

Our priorities • Services and infrastructure: finding new solutions for good services and communications. • Housing and leisure: increasing the number of newcomers, increasing the proportion of non-natives taking an active part in local voluntary associations, providing opportunities for young people to participate in these as well as in the business sector. • Tourism and the visiting industry: developing the visiting industry through new products and solutions, increasing the number of overnight guests, forming local networks through collaborative projects. • The environment and energy: bringing renewal and rejuvenation to farm and forestry based businesses, backing locally produced food and long-term, sustainable energy sources.

Our vision

• People and attitudes: creating a change in attitudes and thus achieving a greater sense of pride and co-operation within We will become a vigorous rural area whose inhabitants the municipalities extending from the coast to the inland, have a sense of community and co-operate across all secestablishing cross-boundary networks and co-operation. toral and municipal borders, while our commitment and knowledge enhance the diversity of social, commercial and • Enterprise and entrepreneurship: strengthening the rural cultural life in our rural areas. More people will choose to economy and enhancing entrepreneurship through stronvisit the rural areas and to live and work there. Locals and ger and more numerous companies. newcomers, young and old, will act as catalysts and promoters in supporting employment opportunities and contribut- • Culture and cultural heritage: preserving and making accessible natural and cultural values, local management ing towards ensuring attractive housing and recreational of the natural and cultural heritage. environments and a good quality of life.

locally produced


Shared innovative thinking brings mass benefits 17

8. Leader Lappland The Leader Lappland area is located in Europe’s last wilderness and comprises eight fell and inland municipalities. It consists of fells, forest, lakes and rivers, framed by the eight seasons that this mountainous region is said to experience. The cultural heritage is closely linked to the Sami culture, the pioneering era and the small-scale peasant society. Our area has rich natural resources and our business sector is characterised by the well-established forest and timber processing industries, a favourable development of the mining industry, the car test industry, and also bioenergy and wind power. The public and private services sectors are undergoing an expansion, while the area has made great progress with respect to nature tourism, winter sports and holding events. Around 45,000 people live here, and the area comprises the municipalities of Arjeplog, Arvidsjaur, Dorotea, Lycksele, Sorsele, Storuman, Vilhelmina and Åsele.

Our vision

We aim to become an attractive up-and-coming area characterised by diversity and contrasts, a holistic approach and collaboration, enterprise and commitment. We will be inspired by global perspectives and local drive, and have an increasing influx of younger people and families from Sweden and the rest of Europe. Many inland inhabitants will choose to continue living here or return to their home municipality after completing their studies. The tourism industry will be developed with the emphasis on the nature

and culture. The level of education, skills and competence will be raised, as will the number of jobs and companies, and the business climate will improve.

Our priorities • Natural and cultural values: preserving and strengthening natural, cultural and social values inherent in cultivated areas and the cultural landscape, preserving the open landscape, promoting ecological production. • Tourism: stimulating the development of tourism, hosting events, youth involvement, joint marketing, skills and competence development. • Entrepreneurship: changing attitudes through positive examples, increasing collaboration, establishing networks and arenas to assist company owners and young people to realise their ideas. • Population influx: strengthening and encouraging a population influx into the region, enticing young people to return home. • Youth measures: stimulating enterprise in school, an awareness of nature and outdoor leisure activities, youth projects and development ideas, increasing self-esteem as well as knowledge of, and pride in, one’s own home area. • International networks: developing openness, international co-operation and external contacts.


An attractive up-and-coming area that focuses on sustainability and enterprise 19

9. Leader Timråbygd The Leader Timråbygd area possesses fantastic natural resources, including six nature reserves. The entire coastline from Ångermanland around Åstön and inland towards Söråker offers a wealth of gems for lovers of nature and beautiful scenery. This is complemented by the inland with areas of steep sandy riverbanks, mountains, valleys, agricultural areas and, furthest away from the coast, the plain wilderness. Our area has a well-established forest industry and many successful small and medium-sized companies that offer their own products and services in a variety of fields. We also have many farmers and foresters, and tourism is an expanding sector in Timrå. Our area has good potential for excellent rural development thanks, above all, to our geographical location at the centre of an expanding region. Timråbygd occupies a strategic position along the E4 highway halfway between the towns of Härnösand and Sundsvall, which provides opportunities for a population influx and local tourism. Around 18,000 people live in the Timråbygd area, which comprises Timrå Municipality.

Our vision

In our vision, the Timråbygd area will have a higher population influx, a tourist industry and company development through close and collaborative local initiatives. Conditions will be created for a positive view of the area and its future development. There will be openness to new ideas on the


part of all the inhabitants, irrespective of age, origin or gender. One of our most important measures for strengthening rural development will be to stimulate attitudes and entrepreneurship through a multitude of measures.

Our priorities • Voluntary associations: providing an arena for collaboration, networks and new meeting-places. • Business initiatives and entrepreneurship: stimulating entrepreneurship, micro-businesses, networks, collaboration, youth business ventures and immigrant entrepreneurs. • Attractive housing: supporting local voluntary associations and developing leisure opportunities, strengthening the sense of community through a local householders’ association and village activities, providing meeting-places and integrating immigrants. • Infrastructure and service: retaining and investing in services within easy reach of the residents, developing innovative solutions for keeping village schools, developing the infrastructure. • The visiting industry: supporting tourism, developing packaging and marketing, highlighting natural and cultural heritage sites. • Culture: devising innovative solutions and formats for working with culture.

Ideas, enthusiasm and visions of a better place to live and work


10. Leader Sollefteå The area of Sollefteå is located in the historic province of Ångermanland and can be divided into forest, farming and river landscapes. The major rivers such as Ångermanälven, Faxälven and Fjällsjöälven and their tributaries are what give the landscape its character. Throughout history, they have been a unifying force within the region and their importance still remains undiminished today. Our area is very extensive and sparsely populated, with half our population living outside the urban centres, while there is a declining population trend and a corresponding rising age structure. We also have a high proportion of entrepreneurs. Land, forest and water are historically the fundamental elements of local incomes. The forest industry has always been important to the area, and it was the advent of the steam-powered sawmills and the large-scale timber exports during this period that enabled the villages to grow and prosper. The Leader Sollefteå area has around 21,000 inhabitants, and comprises Sollefteå Municipality.

Our vision

Sollefteå will become an area with a long-term and sustainable development in ecological, economic and social terms. Co-operation, participation and innovative thinking on the part of the voluntary, private and public actors will be strengthened. We will have an attractive living environment, more jobs and new orders for local companies, for

the benefit of everyone in the town, urban centres and rural villages.

Our priorities • Attractive living environment: investing in a positive environment for children and youths to grow up in, the housing environment, natural and cultural heritage sites, work environment and the infrastructural environment. • New companies: giving priority to co-operation, innovative thinking, marketing, the visiting industry, the public and private services sector, infrastructure, culture and special employment measures for young people and the unemployed. • Development of ecological food production and addedvalue processing: supporting the development of ecological food production and added-value processing. • Renewable energy: developing know-how and local commitment for renewable energy. • New commercial ideas and entrepreneurship: promoting new production, product development, international links and co-operation, ventures where under-represented groups can make a living. • Vision-oriented activities: focusing on young people and families with children and marketing positive visions of the future.


An attractive living environment with more jobs and new orders for local companies


11. Leader 3sam The main strengths of the Leader 3sam area are the natural surroundings and the living environment, as well as the voluntary commitment and enterprise spirit. It offers rivers, lakes, fells, clean water and vast tracts of forest. Our area’s common features include, for example, historical links and collaboration, a large surface area, a sparse population, a large proportion of rural residents, many of whom are entrepreneurs, as well as a strong small-scale farming tradition. The land-based businesses mainly comprise agriculture, forestry, reindeer herding and aquaculture, and there are also several other types of strong and important companies in the area. Within Strömsund Municipality, major industries include mechanical engineering, concrete-casting companies, timber processing and prefabricated house manufacture. Around 19,000 people live in the Leader 3sam area, which comprises the municipalities of Ragunda and Strömsund.

There is a wealth of local activities and the area’s attractivity is reinforced by means of new knowledge, commitment, co-operation, integration and innovation. There is a higher level of care for the natural and cultural heritage sites in order to preserve and enhance their intrinsic value. All the inhabitants of this area function as its ambassadors.

Our vision

• New commercial ideas and entrepreneurship: promoting co-operation between local actors, international links and co-operative ventures where under-represented groups can make a living.

Our area will become one of the best regions in terms of ecological, economical and social long-term sustainable development, and also be an attractive alternative for newcomers to settle in. Co-operation and innovative thinking on the part of voluntary, private and public actors will be strengthened.

Our priorities • Local activities, education/training and mobilisation: prioritising measures that aim at a positive attitude towards the area’s potential. • Culture, tourism, services and infrastructure: stimulating co-operation, innovative thinking and marketing. • Ecological food production: development, value-added processing and marketing in collaboration with producers. • Renewable energy: developing know-how and local commitment.


A vigorous and youthful area rooted in traditional culture


12. Leader Storsjöbygden with its forests, lakes & fells Leader Storsjöbygden, located around the town of Östersund, consists of agricultural areas around Lake Storsjön and areas of fells and forests. Agriculture and forestry are still important business sectors, as is reindeer herding and the visiting and manufacturing industries. Lake Storsjön is the fifth largest in Sweden and, according to legend, the home of the Great Lake Monster, sightings of which have been reported down the centuries. The County Museum of Jämtland has a hundred or so eyewitness accounts by people who, allegedly, have seen this monster. Its proximity to Norway, the skiing metropolis of Åre and many other areas for outdoor activities, as well as good railway and airline services, make this area an attractive place to visit and reside in. Around 36,000 people live in Storsjöbygden, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Krokom, Östersund, Berg and Åre.

Our vision

Leader Storsjöbygden will develop and provide a basis for a higher level of entrepreneurship and business activity, improved services and more creative environments, greater cooperation and new working methods and types of activities. There will be more rural inhabitants and new housing solutions, and better opportunities for young people to continue living here, move here or move back here. There will also be improved infrastructure with faster train journeys and more frequent buses between the town and the rural areas.


Our priorities • Local commitment and meeting-places for dialogue: prioritising network meetings, method and leadership development, village development and training in external analysis. • Brands and rural business activities: prioritising new businesses initiatives, and developing existing companies and entrepreneurship, especially among young people. • Local production and value-added processing: collaboration within distribution, small-scale value-added processing of timber raw materials, local heating and alternative energy solutions, and skills and competence development within local value-added processing. • Living environment and health: stimulating co-operation between schools, sports clubs and local food production, promoting residence in rural areas, developing new healthcare and rehabilitation services. • Services and commerce: prioritising innovative public and private service development, co-operative solutions for social services, medical services and care, accessibility thanks to new technology and IT. • Town and country: developing efficient two-way commuting between different municipalities, common structures for potential newcomers, the labour force and residents.

An rural area with added value 27

13. Leader Åres Gröna Dalar The area of Åres Gröna Dalar is one of the smallest Swedish Leader areas. Fell tourism and forestry and agriculture on the fell slopes, the Sami culture and the local ways of life are all the elements that bind this area together. Fell agriculture is facing an uphill struggle for survival at the same time as tourism, as exemplified by the highly expansive village of Åre at the heart of the area, has a major impact on the business sector. The local population is small but has one of the highest levels of company ownership in Sweden, and the local business sector consists to a great extent of micro- and single-owner companies, while the larger companies do not generally have local owners. Around 9,000 people live in Åres Gröna Dalar, which comprises parts of Åre Municipality.

Our vision

The area of Åres Gröna Dalar will flourish, and it is here that we create and find our livelihood, see our children grow up, live and grow old, invest or spend our leisure time. We will experience a genuine and strong sense of connection and contentment, and we will find a reliable method to provide organised mutual assistance to achieve success. United concerted efforts will forge a strong local identity and create a living landscape with good living conditions that extends

a boundless welcome to residents, visitors and investors. The new green industries will have helped to create a destination and an area that is unique and unprecedented in the entire world.

Our priorities • Greater production, a higher degree of value-added processing and better profitability for the green industries: increasing the number of products and services that originate in the area, prioritising a better organised collaboration and stronger relational production. • A more active use of cultural and environmental values in the local area: switching from a caring/protecting perspective to a user perspective, in order to perceive the true values of the area. Prioritising a more organised collaboration relating to landscape, culture and the environment. • Stronger local economies for a higher quality of life: establishing a sustainable use of local resources, facilitating organised collaboration among individuals, strengthening the two business sectors of agriculture and tourism by reinforcing the connections between them.


Organised collaboration for stronger local economies 29

14. Leader Mittland The Mittland area is located between the coast and the fells in a region that is dominated by forest, while its natural surroundings consist of a heavily forested primary rock plateau with a wealth of lakes and bogs. The area has a common history of agriculture and forestry as well as the industries that grew out of these businesses or through a link to waterpower. The main industries were once iron making and forestry but the former gradually ceased during the nineteenth century, while agriculture and forestry are still important sectors. The Mittland area is characterised by its location between the towns of Sundsvall and Östersund. The majority of the young people of this area move there to study upon graduation from upper-secondary school. Many local inhabitants commute to work there, while others travel there to enjoy a wider range of shopping and entertainment facilities. Both the E14 highway and the SundsvallTrondheim railway pass through the area. The vast inland area of the north of Sweden is one of the most sparsely populated regions of Europe, while in Mittland there are approximately four inhabitants per square kilometre. Mittland has around 38,000 inhabitants, and comprises the municipalities of Bräcke and Ånge as well as parts of Sundsvall Municipality.

Our vision

The local identity of this region will be accentuated and strengthened. Economically viable and environmentally sustainable business activities will be developed where people live and make a living in the countryside.

Our priorities • Entrepreneurship and collaboration: promote entrepreneurship and collaboration among small companies, collaboration projects, skills and competence development, influencing people’s attitudes and building networks. • Development potential of voluntary associations: developing new commercial ideas, regularly held public events, non-traditional solutions for social services and infrastructure. • Agriculture/forestry and the environment: strengthening competitiveness and increasing collaboration.


Improving opportunities to live and make a living in the countryside


15. Leader Hälsingebygden Leader Hälsingebygden is characterised by a strong sense of community and cultural identity. Even though the political boundaries have been moved back and forth down the centuries, the powerful ties between the inhabitants remain unchanged. Our area offers a thrilling variety of natural scenery, where forests and farmland exist side by side with lakes, pastures and meadows. The coastal rubble fields are ancient remains of former seashores and possess a unique flora. Our business sector is varied and multi-faceted with many different types of companies, the larger of which are found primarily in the fields of forestry and engineering, while there is also a large number of small companies. Some of these are found in forestry and agriculture and are usually small family-owned enterprises, the owners of which in many cases find it hard to make a living solely from their farm production. The full-time companies consist mainly of dairy and meat farms as well as farms focused on forestry. Around 93,000 people live in the Hälsingebygden area, which comprises the municipalities of Ovanåker, Nordanstig, Ljusdal, Söderhamn, Bollnäs and Hudiksvall, as well as parts of Härjedalen Municipality.

Our vision

In our vision, the Hälsingebygden area will have a belief in the future and a powerful attraction. We will have a positive business climate and local growth that also includes a rising number of newly started companies. International exchange is varied and quite frequent. Service levels, a wide range of cultural events and lively voluntary associations enable the inhabitants to flourish and attract newcomers to the area. The population demonstrates a positive spirit and a willingness to continuously learn and develop.

Our priorities • Entrepreneurship and innovations: establishing collaboration, supporting local added-value processing, developing the visiting industry, skills and competence development, lobbying and network building. • Local initiatives and local collaboration: improving social services and infrastructure, developing regularly held public events that promote a local identity and commitment and at the same time attract new groups of visitors to the area.


Collaboration, quality and concerted efforts


16. Leader Södra Fjällen A large part of the Södra Fjällen area consists of wilderness with lakes, rivers, forests that stretch for many miles, bogs and fells. There is a rich variety of species and, in many cases, a unique flora and fauna. The four major predators, i.e. bears, wolves, wolverines and lynx are all well represented. The protected and endangered arctic fox is also found here. For thousands of years hunting and fishing have been crucial to human survival, and tourism plays a major role for the local economy both summer and winter, while some of the country’s largest winter sports destinations are found in this area. Around 18,000 people live in the area of Södra Fjällen, which comprises the municipalities of Berg, Härjedalen, Älvdalen and Malung-Sälen.

Fell farming and traditional transhumance are promoted and further developed. In the tourist areas large and small companies cooperate and increase the supply of goods and services, which provides new commercial opportunities and extends the seasons. The production, marketing and distribution of local products, especially with respect to foodstuffs and timber products, are developed.

Our priorities • Viable local communities: giving priority to pilot projects in the field of local economy, upgrading communications and local services, providing young people with opportunities to realise their own development ideas for a better living environment. • Attractive natural surroundings and cultural heritage sites: giving priority to measures to reduce the number of empty houses and promote an open landscape, developing activities and concepts pertaining to the beautiful local roads to increase usage and appeal and in the long term, improve their quality, as well as working forwards sustainable solutions relating to snowmobile use.

Our vision

We intend to develop collaboration, partnership and the spirit of enterprise in its widest meaning in order to ensure sustainable economic growth and an attractive living environment for people of all ages, where they can reside, relocate to or visit. We will have good communications and local services, while more young people are involved in rural development and the local living environment. Attractive local natural surroundings and cultural heritage sites will be marketed, and there will be considerable local influence and responsibility when it comes to natural resources.

• Brands, economy and markets: devising methods to increase tourist numbers, supporting pre-studies and pilot projects in the field of renewable energy.


Economic growth and an attractive living environment for all ages


17. Leader DalÄlvarna The Leader DalÄlvarna area comprises northern and western Dalarna and is dominated by the aquatic landscape formed around the Österdalälven and Västerdalälven rivers. Rivers and lakes have always been of considerable importance to this region, which consists of mountains, forests and water. Major stretches of these two rivers appeal to those seeking natural beauty, tranquillity, quiet surroundings, clean water and fresh air. Hunting and fishing provide additional tourist potential. The Lake Siljan area and Orsa Grönklitt also attract large numbers of tourists. Most of the region is sparsely populated with relatively small urban centres and large rural areas. Small-scale farming has been the foundation of the local businesses sector, and agriculture and forestry are traditionally of major importance. The industries arrived here relatively late. Small-scale companies and handicrafts are also important sources of income. In recent years, several initiatives have been taken in the field of alternative energy sources in order to make the area more environmentally friendly. Around 82,000 people live in the area of DalÄlvarna, which comprises the municipalities of Gagnef, Leksand, Rättvik, Mora, Orsa and Vansbro as well as parts of the municipalities of Malung and Älvdalen.

Our vision

DalÄlvarna will have well-run rural villages that enjoy both commercial and social services, and the citizens will develop new operations and types of companies in order to provide a broader base for trade, elderly care and schools. More companies will be launched and collaborative solutions will be introduced, especially within the visiting industry and cultural tourism. The local municipalities will have a fulltime rural development staff that strives to ensure that the entire municipality is thriving. The focus is on how these projects stimulate social and business development so that their impact will last long after the Leader scheme has come to an end.

Our priorities • Strategic service points in the local rural area: developing forms of collaboration and ensuring that the districts can retain and enhance both public and commercial services. • The visiting industry: stimulating more entrepreneurs and new package solutions for visitors. • Rural youth: stimulating entrepreneurship among our youth.


Long-term impact through a focus on social and commercial development


18. Leader Falun–Borlänge Falun and Borlänge are twin towns that together form the regional centre of Dalarna County. Both municipalities share the rich cultural tradition of mining. The mining industry and ore processing characterise them, although they also form a transition to those areas where the forestry industry is more prominent. Our rural area can be described as being both close to urban centres and as countryside characterised by small-scale companies, agriculture, forests and a number of industrial enterprises. Around 26,000 people live in the Falun-Borlänge area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Falun and Borlänge.

• Experience tourism: developing bookable experience packages or services, networks among tourist actors.

Our vision

• New service solutions – geographical optimisation: encouraging local initiatives for co-ordinating service solutions and study circles.

We will become a living rural area where there is a good balance between businesses and housing, both close to the urban centres and at a greater distance. Excellent public and commercial services will be available to the residents, and lively cultural activities will contribute to a sense of community, personal growth, and the appeal of our villages and rural areas, while also providing inspiration for public commitment and business initiative.

Our priorities

• Small-scale food production, distribution and consumption: establishing arenas where representatives of producers and buyers meet, stimulating business people to take initiatives.

• Equestrian activities: satisfying the demand for stabling from the urban population, marketing and signing contracts. • Sustainable rural development and entrepreneurship: developing methods for heating, transport, water supply and sewerage solutions and also identifying entrepreneurs. • Cluster formations: stimulating network meetings, collaboration with education providers, offering seminars and technology bridges.

• Local development and village appeal: supporting project measures to realise local development plans, process management and fostering enthusiasts. • International contacts: surveying and making contacts within the business sector and organisations, searching for areas with a similar structure for exchanges of ideas and commercial relations. • Proud rural youth: involving young people, developing a contact network of people who work with young entrepreneurs, focusing on entrepreneurship and responsibility for implementation, youths arranging things for one another.


A balance between commercial operations and housing


19. Leader Gästrikebygden The Gästrikebygden area has a favourable geographical location and an excellent infrastructure within easy reach of Stockholm, Arlanda Airport, the North of Sweden, and the inland. It offers a wealth of natural surroundings and cultural heritage sites as well as coastline, town centres, rural areas and forests teeming with predators, while its voluntary organizations are flourishing, especially in the fields of sports and culture. The business sector is dominated by international manufacturers that exist side-by-side with a growing number of commercial and service companies, public-sector actors and Dalarna University. Due to our long industrial tradition, the spirit of the old top-down managed industrial villages lives on in large parts of the area. Around 44,000 people live in Gästrikebygden, which comprises the municipalities of Hofors and Ockelbo, as well as parts of the municipalities of Gävle and Sandviken.

ties for all those who are willing and able to work. This positive trend leads to an influx of newcomers to the area, where many people now actively choose to live, both those who have local roots and those who wish to put down new ones.

Our vision

• The visiting industry: supporting innovative efforts in tourism that aim to package experiences that are linked to the wealth of natural surroundings, culture and events and make them accessible.

Our inhabitants will have a strong belief in the future and be proud of their active voluntary associations, rich cultural life, beautiful countryside and good social services. This vibrant rural district will interact well with, and complement, the range of amenities on offer in the towns and urban centres of the region. Entrepreneurship and strategic collaboration will result in many new companies, above all in the visiting industry, which offer employment opportuni-

Our priorities • Entrepreneurship and innovations: stimulating even more innovative companies and entrepreneurs who will develop tomorrow’s labour market, supporting pre-studies and conceptual developments that together in the long term may lead to more job opportunities. • Local initiatives and collaboration: supporting rural residents in their joint development efforts, local development plans to contribute to more people choosing to live here, establish companies in this area and visit as tourists.

• Processing local products: encouraging the added-value processing of locally produced goods and services.


An attractive rural area for inhabitants, companies and visitors


20. Leader Nedre Dalälven It is above all the Dalälven River that unites the greater part of Nedre Dalälven in terms of geography, culture and history. In the east, this waterway forms lakes and wide bays separated by rapids and river deltas. It is here that the northern taiga meets the European deciduous forest region with its large element of valuable broad-leaf species. Since the Middle Ages, industry based on ore, forests and waterpower have formed the core of the local business sector, while the agricultural industry is strongly represented in large parts of this area. Conditions favour tourism, which is undergoing a positive development. Around 64,000 people live in the Nedre Dalälven area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Säter, Hedemora, Avesta, Sala, Heby, Tierp, Älvkarleby, Gävle and Sandviken.

Our vision

Our vision is a sustainable area where the inhabitants are happy to live and support themselves in a sustainable manner by making use of our wealth of natural and cultural resources. We will have a vibrant social life with a high degree of involvement. There are many places that are attractive both to visitors and to settlers of all ages. We will have a varied and lively local culture and a considerable presence of locally produced goods and services with a pronounced

local character. The landscape will be rich and varied with a high degree of bio-diversity and a clear environmental profile.

Our priorities • Opportunities to make a living: supporting collaboration to promote businesses and entrepreneurship based on the rich local natural and cultural resources. Considerable importance is attached to a long-term perspective and permanent effects. • The environment and sustainable development: prioritising measures that stand a good chance of contributing to the preservation of biological diversity or ecologically sustainable development. • Appeal: enhancing, making accessible and marketing local natural and cultural resources, promoting an influx of permanent residents, local collaboration in devising service solutions. • Participation: network building, providing opportunities for the residents to influence the development of their area, welcoming newcomers and facilitating their integration. • Youth: supporting youth projects that are initiated, managed and run by young people and also favour them.


Employment and a population influx thanks to natural beauty and cultural heritage


21. Leader Upplandsbygd The cultural history of Upplandsbygd features iron and earth, industry and cultivation, plains and forests, coast and inland, large towns and sparsely populated districts. Its great potential is linked to its proximity to a market of considerable size, while other strengths are its rich natural and cultural heritage, excellent communications with the wider world and a growing population with new perspectives and contacts. There is a growing interest in locally produced food with a secured local origin as well as small-scale food production. In addition, there are increasingly better conditions for tourism in such fields as green rehabilitation, outdoor activities and health. Around 93,000 people live in the Upplandsbygd area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Knivsta, Uppsala, Sigtuna, Tierp, and Östhammar.

Our priorities

Our vision

• Nature and environment: striking a balance between exploiting and safeguarding the local countryside and creating a long-term, sustainable development for the natural values, cultural heritage sites and the local inhabitants.

We will develop the local economy through networking and co-operation, so that those who live and work here can enjoy a high quality of life and a good business climate. We envision a sustainable Uppland, in ecological as well as economic and social terms.

• Rural development: harnessing local driving forces and know-how within voluntary associations and other groups for a sustainable development, whilst creating arenas and networks. • Entrepreneurship and business initiatives: involving the local business community in rural development, enhancing competitiveness and broadening the business base. • Culture: developing local culture and handicrafts and establishing creative meeting-places for the experience industry. • Food and meals: promoting collaboration between producers and other actors in the areas of distribution, marketing and product development of goods and services.

• Tourism: viewing tourism in a wider perspective that involves several different aspects of the culture and experience industries and developing the local identity of the area through storytelling and history.


We are developing the area together


22. Leader UROSS The Leader area UROSS (Developing Roslagen and the Stockholm Archipelago) comprises open countryside, coastal districts and the archipelago. While this is a highly attractive area for recreational and open-air activities, there are many places on land and on the islands where it is becoming increasingly difficult to reside and live, as social resources in the form of schools, services and infrastructure are declining. The potential for a higher level of employment and growth can be found within the visiting and tourist industries as well as the equestrian and agricultural sectors. Our area has a long tradition of co-operation among the social economy, society and businesses, which provides major opportunities for the development of local communities. Around 76,000 people live in the UROSS area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Östhammar, Norrtälje, Värmdö, Haninge and Nynäshamn.

Our vision

We will have a younger permanent population attractively housed in the countryside and the archipelago, where new fields of business activity are being established and developed within a flourishing local business sector. Well-run public transport, high-capacity broadband with excellent geographical coverage as well as a range of commercial and

municipal services are key pre-requisites for this positive trend. Our major environmental values of the area with its open small-scale landscape and beautiful lakes, the archipelago and the open sea will be safeguarded and enhanced. There will be a well-established lifecycle approach and environmental issues will be given a high priority. Local voluntary associations are to be active and versatile and ensure productive networks, while there are ample meeting-places for a range of activities.

Our priorities • A strong business sector: stimulating more rural and island-based business people and promoting more local jobs, primarily within year-round tourism and equestrian activities as well as the processing of locally produced foods. • A higher quality of life: expanding the range of leisure and cultural activities, attractive housing for various needs and all age groups as well as strengthening the local services and infrastructure. • A better environment: developing innovative and sustainable local energy and sewerage solutions, environmental expertise, preserving the environment of the archipelago and the cultural landscape.


A younger permanent population with local employment opportunities


23. Leader Gränslandet The natural surroundings of Gränslandet are characterised by open grazing land that alternates with forested areas and lakes. Located among them can be found small industrial villages where there is a long tradition of mining, iron working and small-scale farming and fishing. Around three million people live within a radius of 250 kilometres, which amounts to a third of the Swedish population. This means that there is a major potential for tourism, a range of locally produced foods, green rehabilitation and small-scale energy solutions. Around 67,000 people live in the Gränslandet area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Motala, Norrköping, Finspång, Hallsberg, Örebro, Kumla, Vingåker and Katrineholm.

Our vision

Efforts will be focused in an environmentally conscious and sustainable manner on such issues as small-scale energy solutions, value-added food processing and production. We will find and maintain a balance between man, environment and economy. The commitment of everyone, young and old, foreign immigrants, men and women will be successfully enlisted. Basic services and various different forms of tourism are to be found in our rural areas, while its natural and cultural heritage is accessible to many target groups and constitutes a key growth factor.

Our priorities • Local food processing: stimulating networks, support for local companies that wish to produce food for a local market, developing collaboration between the Swedish University of Agricultural Sciences and local food producers. • Energy: stimulating the green sector to develop energy production, product support for innovators within the energy sector, collaboration between researchers in the field and energy producers. • Basic services: promoting network building among local entrepreneurs, voluntary associations and the public sector, stimulating small-scale public transport solutions. • Natural and cultural heritage: prioritising young people’s right to culture and leisure by providing opportunities for gaining experiences, participation and influence, supporting rural cultural workers and viewing them as a resource for growth. • Housing: encouraging collective solutions for basic services, collaborating for new public transport solutions. • The visiting industry and tourism: providing meetingplaces for owners of small companies, surveying the local potential of the visiting industry, stimulating the use by the population of opportunities for recreation and experiences.


Sustainable development through acknowledging the equal value of all 49

24. Leader Bergslagen The natural surroundings of Bergslagen consist of lakes, rivers and forests that extend for miles and are the natural habitat of wolves, lynx and bears. The pre-eminence of the forests means that local agriculture takes place in a rugged landscape, with smaller numbers of livestock, and production that is basically small-scale in nature. We have a long history as an industrial centre, and there are several centuries of know-how and memories dating from the time when iron ore was mined here, processed and exported all over the world. Steel making is still an important industry here, but despite this manufacturing tradition, new industries are gaining ground and the visiting industry is steadily on the increase. Small industries are beginning to make progress, and the numbers of those who are selfemployed are constantly rising. Around 83,000 people live in the Bergslagen area, which comprises the municipalities of Ludvika, Smedjebacken, Norberg, Fagersta, Skinnskatteberg, Surahammar, Lindesberg, Nora, Hällefors and Ljusnarsberg, as well as Järle, a part of Örebro Municipality.

Our vision

Bergslagen will be a good place to live and work in and to visit, and more people will choose to make it their home. Local groupings and teams of young people with ambition

and creative ideas will run their own rural development projects, and there will be improved collaboration both locally and throughout the entire area. The local residents will have good opportunities to work for themselves, and there will be more work opportunities. The business enterprise sector will expand and there will be a transition to a more versatile business structure.

Our priorities • New opportunities to earn a living: providing individuals with opportunities to work for themselves, for example by setting up and running their own companies, opportunities for training and education or similar measures. • Local development and collaboration: stimulating individuals’ commitment to their village and to Bergslagen, developing collaboration both locally and throughout the whole area. • Increased immigration: making it possible for more people from Sweden and the rest of Europe to discover the advantages and opportunities that exist here and choose to settle in Bergslagen. • Partnership for economic growth and a larger business sector: developing and utilising networks, partnerships and collaborations to promote development.


Visit, live and work in Bergslagen


25. Leader Norra Mälarstranden An outstanding feature of Norra Mälarstranden is the proximity to the northern shore of Lake Mälaren as well as its favourable location within a major urban region. In the south, the landscape is dominated by plains where the soil is excellent for agriculture, interspersed with hills, ridges and wooded slopes. The northern sections of our three western municipalities meet the Bergslagen region, whose predominately-forested terrain is pierced by streams and rivers. Lake Mälaren, the archipelago, and the tourism and visiting industry have major development potential as do locally made products, and there are excellent conditions here for joint efforts to ensure a vibrant rural area. Around 77,000 people live in the Norra Mälarstranden area, which comprises the municipalities of Hallstahammar and Håbo as well as parts of the municipalities of Västerås and Enköping.

Our priorities • Business enterprise and entrepreneurship: altering attitudes to business and developing collaboration between companies and the surrounding community. • The visiting industry and tourism: enhancing the area’s attractiveness for visitors and creating more jobs within new and existing tourist companies. Strengthening municipal and regional networks and collaborative ventures. • Local products and services: promoting the production and distribution of local products. Developing alternative forms of care and rehabilitation in the countryside. • Developing the shores of Lake Mälaren and the archipelago: ensuring conditions for year-round businesses and an upgraded infrastructure. Developing new activities and products that increase tourism. • Young people in the countryside: a system of funding (youth cheques) to provide for leisure activities and meeting-places for young people, as well as future employment opportunities.

Our vision

Our vision is to promote entrepreneurship for sustainable development of the area in economic, ecological and social terms. We will use new ways of working, collaborating and assimilating innovative new ideas and methods. Together, we will outline a holistic approach that views the rural area as a resource for entrepreneurship, enterprise, experience, recreation, quality housing, services and meaningful employment.


Joint efforts to bring life to the northern shore of Lake M채laren


26. Leader Södertälje Landsbygd The Södertälje Landsbygd area is characterised by creative companies and a high level of commitment with respect to social and environmental issues. Many local companies are part of growing clusters in food, agriculture, experiences and creativity. This involves such operations as ecological recycling agriculture, innovative environmental approaches, value-added food processing, social economy, medical services, care and adult education. There are many international networks here, which attract both foreign short-term visitors and immigrants with specialised expertise. This rural area, which is traditional in character, lies within easy reach of the city centre, a fact that makes it a very attractive place to live. Since the 1980s and 1990s, there has been a noticeable increase in the number of people who have moved to our peri-urban and rural area permanently. Around 17,000 people live in the Södertälje Landsbygd area, which comprises the municipal districts of HölöMörkö, Järna, Vårdinge and Enhörna, as well as the areas of Tveta, Lina, Hanstavik and Hall-Håga.

ties that multi-cultural Södertälje offers. We will work to preserve and enhance the rural character and unique qualities, while leading the way with respect to how environmental and rural development go hand in hand.

Our priorities • Future environmental solutions and good examples: supporting projects with solutions that aim at long-term sustainability. For example, local food that also reflects an aspiration to close the ecological cycle both on the farm and between the farm and the local community. We call it “ecological recycling agriculture”. • Educational encounters between urban and rural: promoting encounters between urban and rural, supporting projects that highlight the rich cultural heritage of the rural community associations and making it accessible to visitors. Educational encounters also include tourism when it is undertaken with due care and with an understanding of the vital qualities of the area. • Widening the business sector: prioritising projects that use a holistic approach by, for example, intensifying efforts in joint destination development or establishing an umbrella council for local associations.

Our vision

We envision a sustainable rural area, where the inhabitants can grow up, live, work and have good opportunities for life-long learning. An area that welcomes the encounter between urban and rural communities, and the opportuni-


Urban and rural areas collaborate for sustainable development


27. Leader Västra Mälardalen The area of Västra Mälardalen comprises plains and lakes, urban and rural, cows and crayfish, pike-perch and wheat, reed-choked inlets and soughing spruce forests. It is an area with manifold contrasts and differences, but it is also full of diversity and potential. The landscape is made up of cultivated plains, spruce forests and valuable broad-leaf forests, while the coniferous forests feature narrow stretches of marshland. The area has good communications, a relatively stable labour market and proximity to major cities. It has a large number of voluntary associations in areas such as community halls, culture and sports. In the countryside especially, the activities of these voluntary bodies and the level of commitment play a major role with regard to local social cohesion. Around 43,000 people live in the Västra Mälardalen area, which comprises the municipalities of Köping and Arboga as well as parts of the municipalities of Örebro and Lindesberg.

Our vision

We want Västra Mälardalen to be a living rural area all the year round, where it is possible to reside, work and live, and where you can stay for just one hour or settle for good. The complementary contrasts and the diversity here are to be harnessed to ensure collaboration between different actors and activities. There will be ample employment opportunities, quality housing, services, a business sector and other essential elements for a good quality of life.

Our priorities • Local food production: developing concepts within food production and highlighting locally produced food. • Village renewal: making use of the vitality in various different initiatives by voluntary groups. • The visiting industry: strengthening actors who want to develop operations with regard to visitor potential, focusing on keen business development where the actors either jointly or individually seek business partners. • Infrastructure: developing small-scale and local infrastructure. • Youth: providing conditions for young people to get involved in and influence the decision-making processes, creating a good living environment to ensure that they will want to return home after having completed their studies. • Renewable energy: developing the production of bioenergy and renewable energy solutions based on materials from arable land as well as forests. • Local services: supporting local services and sustainable service solutions. • Business sector: developing the rural companies and new services, for example in care, the production of wood and other forms of bio-energy.


An area of complementary contrasts


28. Leader Inlandet Historically, the area of Inlandet has been characterised by industrial enterprises, industrial villages and large farms. The industrial heritage consists not only of iron and metalworking but also a number of small industrial plants. 1Its proximity to the Swedish capital and to water, great natural qualities and a favourable location within the Lake Mälar Valley region all provide good conditions for diversification and business development. A high level of activity among local voluntary associations demonstrates an enterprising attitude on the part of the inhabitants. The landscape is rich in small biotopes with an extremely rich flora, while the large stretches of lakeshores, forests of valuable broad-leaf trees and oak pastureland contribute to a rich bird life. The well-preserved farm buildings, manor houses and peasant cottages are cultural historical assets. Around 79,000 people live in our area, which comprises the municipalities of Kungsör, Nykvarn, Flen and Gnesta as well as parts of the municipalities of Eskilstuna and Strängnäs.

Our vision

We are aiming to become a vigorous rural area that promotes sustainable development and quality of life among all our inhabitants, and to be an attractive place to live and work. It is an area that is characterised by its inventiveness and one that offers opportunities for all, with a wide range

of cultural activities for all ages. As part of the efforts to deal with climate change, we will promote locally produced goods and services and the production of renewable energy. The unique natural and cultural sites are preserved, and we will have a healthy visiting industry and business sector.

Our priorities • Equality, diversity and gender equality: developing mentorship to support women’s businesses, diversity within culture, housing, business and services, enhancing the integration of immigrants in rural areas as well as utilising the experience of various groups. • Innovation and competence development: developing networks among different actors in different sectors, mentorship support, designing environments that promote innovation and providing access to expertiseenhancing training courses. • Sustainable development: fostering environmental consciousness, projects that strengthen the social welfare for all inhabitants and that contribute to sustainable economic development of the business sector. • Youth: stimulating young people’s studies and development as well as making use of their vitality.


A viable rural area promotes quality of life and sustainable development 59

29. Leader Kustlinjen The area of Kustlinjen has a well-preserved cultural landscape, where the business sector is still dominated by traditional operations such as agriculture, forestry and manufacturing. In recent years, agriculture has concentrated increasingly on cereals, meat production and horse keeping. Our area’s varied natural surroundings include forests, lakes and an archipelago, which together with major cultural values provide opportunities for a rich variety of outdoor activities. The Kustlinjen area shares essential features of the local infrastructure, for example, the E4 highway, the railways and Stockholm-Skavsta Airport. In addition, there is a large deep-water harbour in Oxelösund. Around 45,000 people live in the area of Kustlinjen, which comprises the municipalities of Oxelösund and Trosa as well as parts of Nyköping Municipality.

Our vision

Our emphasis will be on product development and packaging of goods, services, experiences and activities. Innovative solutions will help to promote the establishment of new meeting-places, both physical and virtual, for cluster formations and business networks. Furthermore, new technology and methods will be used to distribute goods, services and people. Ecological solutions for housing and the business sector will be developed. The local labour force will have ahigh level of expertise, and entrepreneurship and renewal of local development efforts will be promoted.


Our priorities • New products and/or services: developing products, new technology and new methods for strengthening the competitiveness of rural goods and services. • New forms of collaboration and networks: establishing meeting-places, cross-sectoral collaboration among, for example, farmers, foresters, islanders, municipalities and representatives of hotels and travel agencies. • More jobs: providing more jobs, new methods and systems for enhancing the skills and competence of the local labour force. • Utilising young people’s ideas and commitment: providing support for young people to independently manage their own local development projects. • Marketing the area in new ways: developing the packaging of goods together with services, experience and activities. • Establishing new companies: stimulating co-operation and networks, developing existing companies and facilitating the establishment of new ones. • Developing the experience industry: developinand making accessible tourism and attractive visitor destinations.

A joint initiative to promote rural development 61

30. Leader Folkungaland The fertile plain districts of northern Götaland are historically connected by Lake Vättern in the west and extensive forested areas in the east, north and south. These fertile plain districts are dominated by intensive cultivation of potatoes and grain, and there is a widespread small-scale business sector. There are a number of smaller conference centres and a few larger tourist establishments that combine a range of activities with accommodation and meals. In recent years, Sweden’s fourth largest urban region has come to be dominated by the expanding major cities of Linköping and Norrköping, which are linked by the Eastern Main Line railway and the E4 highway. Around 52,000 people live in the Folkungaland area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Norrköping, Linköping, Mjölby and Motala.

Our priorities • Renewable energy: supporting training for information dissemination and measures that generate a greater use of biogas. • Outdoor life and tourism: stimulating co-operation among actors, a joint tourism industry based on accommodation, experience and regional cuisine, and devising tourist packages offering travel, accommodation and activities. • Quality of life: examining the requirements of the disabled with respect to the creation of independent companies and investments in a programme that views this group as a local resource.

Our vision

Business development is one of our visions for the area. We have access to a complete infrastructure that includes a major port, airports, railways and road junctions for national and international freight. We aim to have a number of small companies with diversified operations. Large-scale agricultural companies undertake rational grain production as well as, to a lesser extent, livestock production, which provides and also ensures a valuable basis and a great development potential for small-scale food production.

• A local market for products, services, activities and events: improving access to the high-quality goods, services and products made in the region. • Green rehabilitation and healthy housing: offering alternative forms of health care through individual personal choices, participation and opportunities for individuals to influence their own future.


Development that springs from collaboration


31. Leader Mellansjölandet The area of Mellansjölandet consists of forestry and farming districts located in between the three major lakes, Vänern, Vättern and Hjälmaren. It also includes parts of the nature reserves of Kilsbergen, Tiveden and Tylöskog as well as the Närke plain where farming flourishes amid a beautiful cultural landscape. The area consists largely of districts located in and between the forests, while ancient cultural sites are found where the forests meet the plain. The countryside is fertile and varied and there are places of historical interest and other sites that are worth a visit. In many respects this area functions as a hub for passengers and goods travelling by the major highways, European routes and the railway system. Around 60,000 people live in the Mellansjölandet area, which comprises the municipalities of Askersund, Degerfors, Lekeberg and Laxå as well as parts of the municipalities of Hallsberg, Karlskoga, Kumla and Örebro.

Our priorities

Our vision

• Local small-scale, renewable energy and climate preserving measures: promoting the use of local renewable resources, new networks and forms of collaboration, skills and competence development and experience exchange.

In our vision the area of Mellansjölandet will have a sustainable development in economic, ecological and social terms, with a good quality of life. Local roots and influence allow the development of long-term forms of co-operation, where the common factors are environment, climate and sustainable development. The local level is the basis for all these efforts, and it is through individuals’ commitment to having an effect on their daily lives that concrete results that can make a crucial difference will be attained.


• Entrepreneurship and business initiatives: stimulating new employment opportunities and strengthening the local economy and innovative commercial ideas. Promoting local cultivation, processing and marketing of natural local raw materials, new networks and methods of co-operation. • Natural and cultural heritage: preserving, utilising and/ or developing the local natural and cultural heritage, promoting local cultivation, processing and marketing of natural local raw materials as well as a sustainable lifestyle. • Services, housing and infrastructure: stimulating innovative, locally adapted solutions, new ways of coming together on topical issues, promoting new attitudes and a modified development culture.

• Promoting the area’s attractiveness and quality of life: promoting an influx of new residents, supporting local enthusiasts, establishing participation and working towards a sustainable lifestyle.

Joint efforts result in sustainable development and a good quality of life


32. Leader Värmlands BergsLAG The Leader area Värmlands BergsLAG has throughout its history been characterised by its technical and economic development, export earnings, great appeal and immigration. All these factors are the result of its natural assets in the form of rich ore fields, forests, hydroelectric power and communications. During the last century, its economic conditions altered radically as a consequence of the closure of its mining industry, factories and farms, and the accompanying decline in the population. Farming is still undertaken primarily in the agricultural districts next to Vänern, while large parts of Bergslagen are characterised by external ownership of forests, hydroelectric power and industrial plants. Approximately 18,000 people live in Värmlands BergsLAG, which comprises the municipalities of Filipstad, Storfors and Kristinehamn as well as parts of Karlskoga Municipality.

Our vision

Our rural areas will show a positive trend in economic, social and environmental terms. The business sector base will be broadened and the competitiveness of the rural companies will be strengthened, especially within tourism. Voluntary associations and the non-profit sector will play a major role in the social cohesion of the area. People are attracted by the prospect of living and working in the area, while the attractiveness of the local housing environment generates an increased level of relocation. Our young people continue to live here or return home after


having acquired an education and enhanced expertise. Their perspectives, involvement and commitment are key elements in the area’s future, while the inhabitants have a greater trust in the future and their own abilities.

Our priorities • Business development: increasing collaboration, company development and entrepreneurship, improving the competitiveness of agriculture and forestry, and developing complementary activities for agriculture. • Tourism: promoting tourism, business initiatives and entrepreneurship, increasing collaboration between small companies and the municipal and regional tourist bodies, and developing reservation systems and package offers. • Attractive housing and quality of life: increasing interaction between different actors in the fields of housing and construction, service flats for the elderly, developing basic services and preserving the countryside and heritage sites. • Rural youth: promoting entrepreneurship, a sense of responsibility and self-confidence among young people. • Skills and competence development: providing needs-based competence development such as courses, study trips, experience exchange, mentorship and in-house training. • National and transnational co-operation: co-operation with other local action groups with respect to ideas, stimulus and experience exchange.

Bergslagen, a vigorous area 67

33. Leader Närheten The area of Leader Närheten consists of rural districts within Our priorities easy reach of urban centres that display many similar problems and potentials. Karlstad, its regional centre, provides a • Business development: improving the competitiveness of local agriculture and forestry, entrepreneurship and busibroad-based labour market with employment opportunities ness initiative, complementary activities for agriculture within commuting distance. Many amenities are close at and also tourism. hand, such as education and training and a market for locally produced goods and services. The countryside is never • Attractive housing environment: upgrading infrastructure far away, with open landscape, forests and fields, proximity and services, natural and cultural heritage sites, and also to Vänern and other lakes and waterways. The local inhabitphysical and social meeting-places. ants form a tight-knit community. • Skills and competence development: providing needsAround 70,000 people live in the Närheten area, based inputs that strengthen the skills and expertise of which comprises the municipalities of Forshaga, Grums, primarily the business sector, services and local developHammarö, Kil and Karlstad, apart from Karlstad City. ment.

Our vision

We want to see a higher level of entrepreneurship and self-employment that strengthens the local economy and creates new jobs, while it is easy to establish networks and new forms of collaboration. The commitment among young people, immigrants and women will be stimulated and there will be a considerable influx of families and businesses. The natural and cultural heritage is preserved and enhanced, and the local population enjoys a high quality of life and possesses a belief in the future.


Livskraftigt CountrysideBergslagsLagen close to urban areas

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34. Leader Växtlust Värmland The area of Växtlust Värmland has a small-business tradition that has also been shaped by historical periods during which glassworks, paper mills and ironworks were active. There are many flourishing voluntary associations and a landscape that varies considerably, which contributes to the character of the area. Western and northern Värmland is heavily forested, with some areas where farming is important as well as others that are pure wilderness. Forestry, along with sawmills and forest industries, are natural elements of the business sector. All lakes, waterways and elevated areas where snow is always guaranteed provide a basis for year-round tourism. There are also large hotels and other features of the visiting industry, a graphical industry and various manufacturing plants. In Växtlust Värmland lives approximately 90,000 people, comprising the municipalities of Arvika, Eda, Hagfors, Sunne, Säffle and Torsby.

at children and young people, and greater collaboration among public sectors, companies and voluntary associations will be safeguarded.

Our vision

• Rural youth: strengthening and renewing local voluntary associations, youth projects, meeting-places and sports facilities.

With joint efforts we want to create vibrant rural districts that are economically and ecologically viable. The energy derived from a wealth of ideas, the cultivated fields and a more diverse business sector creates a climate of well-being and joy among local inhabitants of all ages. Our value base and approach become key factors for success and common growth. The area will develop and attract more inhabitants from younger age groups. We will focus on initiatives aimed

Our priorities • Rural companies and actors: promoting tourism within the equestrian sector and visitor experiences, renewable energy production, small-scale food production, business collaboration and an entrepreneurial spirit. • Nature and culture: raising environmental awareness; environmental adaptation of operations in fragile environments, promoting open landscapes, information, training and education, public health and recreation. • Rural services: upgrading infrastructure, schools and housing, public information in several languages, accessibility and areas for various activities.

• Building bridges: increasing collaboration among companies, voluntary associations and municipalities, as well as between centre and periphery; attracting newcomers to the area and integrating new residents and new cultures.


Green industries and initiatives for young people in the beautiful V채rmland countryside


35. Leader Norra Skaraborg Norra Skaraborg is where the fertile Västgöta plain meets the Tiveden wilderness with its primeval forests and unspoiled natural surroundings. It is located in between Sweden’s two largest lakes, Vänern and Vättern, which are linked by the Göta Canal. Our local business sector is made up largely of small manufacturing companies as well as craft and service companies, but agriculture and forestry are still of considerable importance to the area. The lively boat traffic on Göta Canal, and its many locks, has lead to the development of a number of small companies that operate within the visiting industry. Approximately 38,000 people live in the area of Norra Skaraborg, which comprises the municipalities of Mariestad, Töreboda, Karlsborg and Gullspång.

local businesses. Support will be provided for collaboration projects that concentrate on new products, sales and marketing, while the commitment and the interests of local young people are put to good use.

Our priorities • Village development: creating attractive surroundings for local housing to promote and sustain economic activity both in social services and the business sector. It is of particular importance to support and harness the interests and the participation of young people. • Renewable energy: creating structures for co-operation, product and business development, and the acquisition of new knowledge.

Our vision

• Small-scale food production: stimulating product development, marketing, developing existing companies and starting up new ones. Interaction and collaboration with the entire processing chain are of particular importance.

We are aiming for a positive local trend for both the business sector and local residents, with increasing economic growth resulting in more jobs. The new local companies that are established will contribute to a greater influx of newcomers, while the residents enjoy considerable influence and involvement when it comes to local development issues. There will be a growing confidence in the future, a healthier local economy and greater self-confidence among

• The visiting industry: making use of small-scale factors and investing in sustainable development, efforts that aim at broadening access to local housing and activities, as well as a special focus on water-based tourism.


Food, energy, tourism and rural development 73

36. Leader Dalsland och Årjäng This part of Sweden encompasses plains, lakeshores, a lake district, marshlands, hills, wilderness and mountains. Not to mention the natural surroundings of the town of Årjäng with many sizeable lakes among the forests and farms on the plains. This is one of the most dense concentrations of lakes and rivers in the country. The cultural landscape is to a great extent characterised by agriculture and forests, with a notable presence of small-scale production. Industry, too, has shaped this area, where there is a long tradition of industrial villages with mills, blacksmiths and independent iron masters. Over the years the ironworks have given way to paper pulp factories, paper mills and motor vehicle sub-contractors. The nature in large parts of the area remains unspoiled, which provides excellent recreational opportunities for residents and visitors alike. Around 60,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Årjäng, Dals-Ed, Bengtsfors, Färgelanda, Mellerud and Åmål, as well as parts of Vänersborg Municipality.

decision-makers, organisations, companies and private individuals to work to secure the future of the area. We aim to have a climate of belief in the future and an encouragement of entrepreneurship, with a viable and well-functioning infrastructure.

Our priorities • Quality of life: upgrading services, new meeting-places and alternative cultural and leisure activities; highlighting cultural history, craft traditions and natural surroundings and making them accessible to permanent residents as well as visitors. • Infrastructure: integrating and upgrading the infrastructure in order to promote growth; working to secure access to a reliable electricity supply, high-quality telephony and high capacity broadband for all.

Our vision

Our area will offer its inhabitants an excellent quality of life, while employment increases thanks to various collaboration projects and a high level of competitiveness. The visiting industry will be upgraded and developed so that new target groups visit the area and already existing visitors have an incentive to return. There is a shared desire among


• The visiting industry: harnessing the potential of our environment, investing in marketing and facilitating co-ordination at a local level, developing existing tourism and backing new forms that are based on experiences, activities and knowledge. • Entrepreneurship: stimulating entrepreneurship; collaboration through partnership, clusters, networks or experience exchange.

Employment, business activity and quality of life for rural residents 75

37. Leader Ranrike Norra Bohuslän This area of Ranrike Norra Bohuslän is a coastal landscape with bare cliffs, fjords and a rugged archipelago, as well as beautiful unspoiled woodlands, lakes, plains and wilderness. The business sector consists predominantly of small companies in the fields of handicrafts, services, manufacturing and commerce, where fishing and agriculture still account for a relatively large proportion. In the towns of Strömstad and Tanum, business life is very much influenced by its relationship and proximity to Norway and a high level of cross-border trade, while local tourism is expanding. Around 58,000 people live in the Ranrike Norra Bohuslän area, which comprises the municipalities of Lysekil, Munkedal, Sotenäs, Tanum and Strömstad.

Our vision

among young people, who want to continue to live here or return after completing their higher education.

Our priorities • Attractive and living communities: strengthening a sense of community and local identity, establishing meeting-places, upgrading rural schools and preserving heritage sites. • The visiting industry as a growth factor: stimulating skills and competence development, developing new products and tourist packages, investing in infrastructure and services as well as collaboration projects with other Leader areas. • Culture as a growth factor: increasing interaction and promoting networks among cultural workers and those in other fields.

• Committed children and young people: harnessing their The inhabitants will enjoy a good level of social services, commitment, enhancing leadership and entrepreneurwith schools and nurseries close at hand. The number of ship, co-operation between schools and the business permanent residents will increase and there will be plenty of community as well as offering mentorship. trainee places and apprenticeships for young people. A large proportion of newly established companies will be started • The environment and energy: developing networks, knowby women and young people. ledge dissemination, collaboration in nutrient leakage The tourist industry binds together the coast, inland, reduction, energy transition and local food production. culture and health in creative and innovative combinations. • Re-vitalised business community: offering support to Educational experience of the countryside creates an underentrepreneurs, the self-employed, the public sector and standing for the environmental challenges at the same time businesses in general. as new services are developed by the visiting industry. There is an interest in the history and culture of the area, especially


Higher long-term employment and appeal 77

38. Leader Terra et Mare The area of Terra et Mare is part of the Swedish West Coast, from Gothenburg’s southern archipelago to Uddevalla in the north. It is characterised by the contrasts between town and country, coast and inland, agriculture, forestry and fishing, manufacturing industries and the service sector. It contains many small single-owner companies, and while elements such as entrepreneurial collaboration, social companies and co-operatives are on the increase, they have not multiplied to the same extent as in Gothenburg. Around 100,000 people live in our area, which comprises the municipalities of Orust, Tjörn and Öckerö, parts of those of Uddevalla, Stenungsund and Kungälv, and well as Gothenburg’s southern archipelago.

Our vision

In our vision the entire area has been developed in such a manner that its rural settings are an attractive place to work and live in all year round. Its diversity, which can be described as one of complementary contrasts, is harnessed to establish a collaboration between different actors and

activities. It is these very contrasts and differences that generate the potential for rural growth. This, in turn, provides fresh opportunities for employment, housing, services, businesses, education and training, and other essential elements of a high quality of life.

Our priorities • Entrepreneurial development: giving priority to innovative ideas that provide growth in employment opportunities and/or new companies. • Local production and sales: promoting local production and sales of food, arts and crafts. • The visiting industry: strengthening the brand of Bohuslän through attractiveness, producing more visitor destinations and higher occupancy levels at for example hotels, camp sites and guest harbours. • Youth: providing support for youths to create and run their own activities.


A coastline of complementary contrasts 79

39. Leader Göta Älv The river Göta Älv is located in the county of Västra Götaland and runs right through the region from north to south, as does the E45 highway. There are many old industrial villages here and a great diversity of natural surroundings. The ever-changing landscape contains coastal, agricultural and forested areas, while there is also a large number of lakes and waterways. The region’s manufacturing industries have a long tradition and are still major employers, while in other fields the area is dominated by many small enterprises. Saab and Volvo are two major companies that have plants in the town of Trollhättan, whose future is of direct importance to the rural area both as workplaces and also on account of the many companies that work as their sub-contractors. The entire region has many active voluntary bodies, and village community associations, sports clubs and adult education organisations make great efforts to offer the inhabitants a wide range of activities. Around 56,000 people live in the Göta Älv area, which comprises the municipalities of Ale and Lilla Edet as well as parts of the municipalities of Trollhättan and Vänersborg.

continue to live locally and a greater influx of newcomers is facilitated. Those individuals who choose to settle in the countryside comprise a resource in the form of new skills and new ideas about agriculture, food production and the business sector. We will find, develop and support new forms of collaboration in order to ensure a high added-value for products and services, and there is a willingness to utilise available human resources in the form of people of different genders, age and cultural backgrounds.

Our vision

• The visiting industry: finding methods for working together, marketing, stimulating higher training levels and the formation of networks among various actors.

Economic growth is to be promoted with a subsequent increase in employment opportunities. The inhabitants

Our priorities • Entrepreneurship: stimulating collaboration for more efficient means of transport, marketing and product development, forming and developing networks, arranging seminars, training and education, study trips and experience exchange. • Quality of life: creating meeting-places; using natural surroundings as an asset for housing and entrepreneurial potential, giving young people opportunities to organise cultural and leisure activities, maintaining and upgrading service levels.


Entrepreneurship, quality of life and the visiting industry 81

40. Leader Göteborgs Insjörike This area has a large number of lakes and waterways, which provide a wide range of enriching experiences for the benefit of both body and soul. Historically, the waterways have also had a major impact and been responsible for many interesting heritage sites in the form of stately homes, manor houses and traditional industrial villages. These factors strengthen the local identity and offer residents and visitors alike a range of experience and beautiful sights. The business sector is highly diverse with a large number of small companies in the fields of service and manufacturing. There are many establishments that have facilities for conferences as well as festive events. The majority of companies in the local municipalities are in the service sector, in such fields as commerce, finance, science and technology. Around 99,000 people live in this Leader area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Lerum, Härryda, Partille, Mölndal and Alingsås.

from all over Europe will have discovered that they may sample the delights of both the big city and country living in the same week. Others learn about the area through one of its many cultural and sporting events. As a result of all the new things that happen when voluntary associations, companies and municipalities work together on the basis of local needs, there will be great scope for people to contribute, exert an influence and experience community and a sense of belonging.

Our priorities • Tourism: upgrading the visiting industry, experience and recreation, and starting to establish the identity of the area as a visitor destination. • Health: developing concepts relating to quality of life, well-being and health for both residents and visitors.

Our vision

Göteborgs Insjörike will be a place of well-being both for residents and visitors. A wide range of health-oriented activities will be available to everyone throughout the year. Conference guests will come from near and far to combine work with the attractions that the area offers in the form of culture, natural beauty and recreation. Vacationing families


Water, the visiting industry and health 83

41. Leader Västra Skaraborg Western Skaraborg comprises rural areas, plains, plateau hills and Lake Vänern. Its business sector is predominantly one of small companies operating primarily within agriculture and manufacturing. There is a great variety of attractive housing options at reasonable prices. There is an extensive range of cultural events and outdoor activities, as well as many ancient monuments and historic buildings in really exciting settings. Around 70,000 people live in the area, which comprises the municipalities of Essunga, Grästorp, Götene, Skara, Vara and Lidköping, with the exception of Lidköping City.

Our priorities • District and community hall upgrading: providing attractive residential settings, stimulating economic activity and maintaining social services and business operations. • Innovative businesses and rural collaboration: supporting product development, collaboration and marketing, developing existing companies and starting new ones in order to increase the employment rate. • The visiting industry: developing tourism and the visiting industry. • Renewable energy: building structures for co-operation and conveying new knowledge or products.

Our vision

Our aim is to develop the rural area and promote the business sector by supporting innovative ideas and encouraging collaboration. We also want to preserve small-scale businesses and promote sustainable development and utilisation of local resources. Another development goal is to achieve a higher quality of life for both the residents and visitors to the area.

• Food: enhancing the added-value processing of locally produced foodstuffs. • The equestrian sector: stimulating growth in an area with a large number of horses.


A higher quality of life for local residents and development of the business sector 85

42. Leader Östra Skaraborg Agriculture and forestry have long been prominent features of this area and still dominate the business sector. The same holds true of food production based on agriculture and small-scale processing companies. There are also industrial companies in the field of timber products and subcontractors in the mechanical industry. In addition, there is considerable potential for providing renewable energy in the form of biogas and wind power, as well as the cultivation of raw materials for energy production. The area is famous for its cultural landscape with the preserved megalithic graves in Falbygden, major natural values such as the long ancient mountain ridge at Hökensås, the plateau hills around Skövde and Falköping, Lake Hornborga with its wealth of bird life and the small municipality of Hjo, an idyllic small town on the shores of the vast expanse of Lake Vättern. Around 96,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Falköping, Hjo, Tibro, Tidaholm, Habo and Mullsjö, as well as parts of Skövde Municipality.

rural housing and to enjoy the recreational facilities and development potential. All development efforts are based on local conditions and with local actors.

Our priorities • Locally produced food: giving priority to product development and marketing, expansion of existing companies, establishment of new ventures, and collaborative efforts with the entire processing chain. • Renewable energy: building structures for collaboration, product and business developments, as well as new knowledge within the field. • The visiting industry: stimulating product development, interaction and marketing, preserving the small-scale approach and committing to a sustainable development. • Rural development: promoting collaboration, town centre developments and commerce in order to create vigorous central hubs.

Our vision

To create economic growth by stimulating a diversified business base and increasing employment. Enhancing the attractive area by giving people greater opportunities to


Food, energy, tourism and rural development


43. Leader Sommenbygd This area is located on both sides of the border between the historic provinces of Östergötland and Småland, as well as between two expanding urban centres: Jönköping and Linköping/Norrköping. Strong local brands such as Gränna and Vadstena are located here along with thrilling areas of natural beauty such as Östra Vätterbranterna, Omberg and Uknadalen. There is a long tradition of trading sites and markets, for example, old squares and market places in towns such as Adelöv, Lommaryd, Kisa and Ödeshög. There are also the market towns of Vadstena, Gränna and Tranås as well as a large number of local rural producers and farm shops throughout the entire area. Furthermore, there are many natural and cultural assets that can be developed into attractive products and services. Around 80,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Vadstena, Ödeshög, Boxholm, Ydre, Kinda, Tranås, Aneby and Åtvidaberg, as well as parts of Jönköping Municipality.

Our vision

long-term sustainability and which limit the environmental burden.

Our priorities • Culture and cultural heritage as a basis for commercial development: inspiring entrepreneurs and voluntary associations, innovative solutions that ensure a lower environmental burden, networks and interaction, new ideas and the development of new attractions and visitor destinations linked to current travel motive within the visiting industry. • Nature as a resource: developing green rehabilitation, nature tourism, production based on local raw materials or different events and activities where nature is the setting. • Common appeal and local development: stimulating local commitment and local partnerships to find innovative solutions relating to rural services, infrastructure, meeting-places and cross-boundary arrangements. • Collaboration with other Leader areas: joint action for greater knowledge, creative development and new activities, creating economic growth and contributing towards a broader rural business base.

By 2013 the area will be one of the most dynamic and creative rural regions in Europe. Systematic, successful efforts will be made to develop the rural area and transform its potential into attractive brands, products and offers. Such efforts are devoted exclusively to activities that have


Market centre Sommenbygd


44. Leader Astrid Lindgrens Hembygd Astrid Lindgrens Hembygd in north-eastern Småland is a characteristically sparsely populated border area with a negative population trend. Many people are employed in traditional fields such as timber, foundries, food production, agriculture and forestry. In addition, there are a relatively large number of people working in the health care services. The inhabitants are the most important resource, along with the landscape, the cultural heritage and strong brands within such fields as music, theatre, storytelling and animation. Around 48,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Vimmerby, Eksjö and Hultsfred as well as parts of Oskarshamn Municipality.

Our vision

Ten years from now, we will have a larger population and a flourishing business sector, whose uniqueness will have been strengthened at the same time as new industries will have developed. The area will be a role model for the achievement of sustainable development and will be imbued with a tolerant, open and creative social climate, where it will be easy to test and realise one’s ideas, while both failure and success will be acceptable. All this in accordance with the fundamental view that entrepreneurship is

a playful approach that can be applied not only to business development but also within other areas such as a rich cultural life, ecologically grown local produce, and children’s games and learning.

Our priorities • A future forum: giving priority to measures where efforts focus on sustainable development, knowledge dissemination and a dialogue on the connections between global trends, local visions, responsibility and actions. • Long-term entrepreneurial enhancement: stimulating new and existing local groups to make renewed efforts to bring about development, integration, meeting-places, mentorship and a potential for influence locally. • Small-scale company and business development: discovering new development methods, devising networks and company concepts within the green industries, tourism, culture, women’s business enterprise, local and organic food. • Project counselling and development: stimulating projects through outreach missions, inspiration, guidance, project design and finance, follow-up and assessment.


Local initiative and entrepreneurship with a focus on sustainable development


45. Leader Kustlandet This area comprises the coastlines and archipelagos of the province of Östergötland and the county of Kalmar, from Bråviken down to the northern end of Kalmar Sound. Large parts of this relatively untouched area possess a natural and cultural environmental value of national importance. The majority of the inhabitants live in small villages and out in plain rural areas, both along the coast and in the predominantly forested and cultivated areas. The commercial sector is based on use of natural resources, manufacturing and tourism. The majority of the rural companies are small, generally one-man operations. The owners are not merely entrepreneurs but are also committed to local efforts and feel a great responsibility for keeping the rural area alive. Around 60,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Mönsterås, Västervik, Valdemarsvik and Söderköping as well as parts of the municipalities of Norrköping and Oskarshamn.

Our vision

The area will be accessible for organisations, permanent residents and visitors. Networks of companies are established, the small-scale visiting industry is developed and young people are inspired to become entrepreneurs. A transition is under way towards a sustainable society with renewable energy sources, while efforts are made to reduce fertiliser overuse.

Our priorities • Business initiative and employment: developing entrepreneurship and networks, expanding and enhancing tourism; renewable energy, locally produced goods and destination development. • The environment and quality of life: committing to ecotechnology, developing cultural sites; a living coastline and archipelago, reducing fertiliser overuse, providing housing for young people and seniors, and improving commuting feasibility. • Young people: establishing participation and influence; special campaigns to encourage a can-trepreneurial attitude.

In our vision, the area Kustlandet is envisaged as a forwardlooking growth area with a vigorous and sustainable potential for local housing and employment. Its rich natural and cultural sites will be preserved, cultivated and developed.


Preservation through cultivation 93

46. Leader KalmarÖland The natural environment of this area is highly varied, ranging from plains and forested districts on the mainland to the alvar (limestone shingle) terrain and shoreline meadows of the island of Öland, which has over three hundred kilometres of coastline. Throughout the area there are unique natural and cultural environments that enjoy both a national and an international status. Agriculture and forestry are important sectors for rural employment, and these employ a higher proportion of the labour force than in the rest of Sweden. The visiting industry has traditionally played an important role and over time has come to assume ever-increasing significance and is locally one of the most crucial growth industries. The major part of the commercial sector is based on small businesses. Around 50,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Borgholm and Mörbylånga on the island of Öland as well as parts of Kalmar Municipality.

Our priorities

Our vision

• Culture: promoting inter-cultural dialogue and cultural diversity as well as harnessing the creative forces of culture as a unifying factor for growth and employment.

• Clean water and coastal environments: achieving a higher water quality on land and in the sea, through measures undertaken in partnership. Existing knowledge should be harnessed, but we should also embrace new ideas and innovative pilot schemes. • Tourism and business development: highlighting and developing the many local small business operations as good role models for new entrepreneurs and business people on their way to strong, sustained local growth. • Social mobilisation and village development: promoting the conditions for expansion of the non-profit sector and devising new methods for making better use of volunteers as a resource in social development. Stimulating new local solutions and collaborations to ensure more attractive housing environments in the countryside.

In our vision, viable and sustainable conditions for local people and companies are created in the area. Local initiatives, driving forces and innovative ways of working will make a positive contribution to a sustainable economic, social and ecological development and a rural area filled with joy, happiness, involvement and an improved quality of life.


A higher quality of life in a living rural area


47. Leader Västra Småland This area, which is part of Jönköping County, shows an exciting variation among its beautiful countryside, which offers bewitching forests and bogs, lakes, pastures and meadows. Not to mention a range of natural and cultural sites that all require active protection and conservation. They are valuable resources for a visitor- and tourism-based sector, with potential for attractive living environments thanks to ample space, natural beauty, fresh air and silence. The poor soils and harsh climate in many parts of this region made it difficult for agriculture alone to provide an adequate income, and so local resourceful entrepreneurs devised other methods of making a living. The abundance of small companies and the enterprise culture of Gnosjö are eloquent proof of this. Around 85,000 people live in the area of Västra Småland, which comprises the municipalities of Gnosjö, Gislaved and Vaggeryd, as well as the southern parts of Jönköping Municipality.

Our vision

By 2013 the inhabitants of this rural area will live, thrive and make a living here. There will be new meeting-places and forms of collaboration within an attractive environment

with great scope for creativity and experimentation. Collaborative projects at both a national and an international level will be a key element of such efforts. There will be a strong business sector with a higher level of diversification and more new companies. There will be a positive population trend with plenty of interesting and challenging jobs for young people, who to an ever-increasing degree will return home at the end of their studies. In all, the area will be an even more attractive place to live in and to visit.

Our priorities • Gnosjö-style entrepreneurship: harnessing and enhancing local potential and entrepreneurial tradition to promote a higher level of employment and business initiatives. • Joint development together with children and young people: putting their creativity to good use through their participation in, and influence over, the development of an attractive living environment. • Countryside and culture: enhancing the natural and cultural heritage, resources for a larger business section and an attractive living environment.


A rural area whose inhabitants can live, thrive and make a living


48. Leader Mitt i Småland Our common ground is the sense of belonging to Småland; the traditional small-scale nature of the agriculture, forestry and commercial enterprise, which is now developing into modern businesses in this thriving rural area. The business sector mainly comprises manufacturing, timber products and the mechanical industry. In other respects, the area is dominated by agriculture and forestry with its rough terrain. The local identity and cultural development are historically intertwined with the river Emån as a trade, transport and communication route, while the area consists entirely of inland municipalities within commuting distance of regional population centres. Around 73,000 people live in this area, which comprises Högsby Municipality as well as parts of the municipalities of Nässjö, Sävsjö and Vetlanda.

Our vision

What is envisaged is a living, attractive and socially wellfunctioning rural area with a vigorous business sector within different fields, while the creation of a welcoming business climate ensures better employment prospects. The flourishing tourist trade will become an important industry, while representatives of the public, private and non-profit sectors have strong networks by means of which they jointly develop local entrepreneurship.

The local population will enjoy a good quality of life and a high housing standard. They are able to continue living in the home district at the same time as newcomers are attracted to the area and are able to enjoy the silence, space and solitude that are among the benefits that it can offer. Openness and diversity are key features, and a number of projects create a sense of belonging while also developing natural and cultural sites as well as meeting-places and events.

Our priorities • Increased business activity: stimulating new ways of running businesses, increasing local production of goods and services, networks and interaction. • More people living in new or existing dwellings: improving conditions for rural living. • Sustainable solutions: addressing communication and infrastructure needs. • Openness to new ideas: favouring new forms of collaboration on both national and international level.


An attractive rural area


49. Leader Sjuhärad Sjuhärad is a historic geographical unit that dates back to the seventeenth century. Its countryside is wooded, with many seas and waterways. The cultural landscape includes beautiful, open valleys and preserved pastures. The area has been shaped by the textile industry and small businesses, and its inhabitants have, after various crises such as the end of the textile industry and the disbanding of local regiments, re-invented themselves as innovators and survivors. One historical legacy is the peddler tradition, the spirit of which lives on today, since the local inhabitants have a fondness for doing business. The cultural heritage of its textile tradition binds the area together but some districts have also become known for the production of kitchen furniture, tin-plate products, buckets and household goods. Around 100,000 people live in this area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Borås, Ulricehamn, Mark, Svenljunga, Tranemo, Bollebygd, Herrljunga and Vårgårda.

Our priorities • Energy and the environment: giving priority to sustainable environmental and energy projects that make possible the transition to a more environmentally sound lifestyle. • Local development: stimulating commitment, co-ordination and creativity to generate competitiveness, in order to make the area a more attractive place to live and work in. • Entrepreneurship: providing an opportunity for expertise enhancement, advisory services, inspiration and contacts for new and growing companies that will become a motor for growth throughout the area. • Tourism: making possible networking among entrepreneurs, municipalities and voluntary associations that results in interaction and collaboration.

Our vision

A living rural area, created through interaction, commercial diversification, participation and sustainable development in economic, ecological and social terms. The inhabitants are able to make a living locally and enjoy a wealth of leisure activities. There is close collaboration among companies, employers, municipalities, the University of Borås, voluntary associations, organisations and the inhabitants.


Increased well-being and rural employment opportunities


50. Leader Kustbygd Halland Coastal Halland is a relatively densely populated area where the countryside is within easy reach of major population centres. In the south, the coast is dominated by long sandy beaches, while in the north it consists of cliffs, bays and skerries. During the summer months, the long beaches attract many visitors to the area and the experience industry has become an increasingly important one for the inhabitants. Beyond the coastal strip, the agricultural landscape unfolds and the area boasts old farming traditions. The specialisation and large-scale rationalisation within agriculture has led to a situation where natural and cultural values in farming areas are under threat and buildings of cultural historical value are abandoned and at risk of being ruined. Excellent raw materials are produced locally but are not processed in Halland. There may be a challenge in combining the experience industry with raw material processing, i.e. combining services and experiences with a product. Around 90,000 people live in the area, which comprises parts of the municipalities of Kungsbacka, Varberg, Falkenberg, Halmstad and Laholm.

Our vision

and the packaging of the rural experiences on offer all year round, where especially food and meals play an important role. The area is also part of the common development of the region, for example in designing meeting-places and networking among companies and other actors. It is also an active participant in the collaboration with other involved actors for the joint development of Halland in the following priority areas.

Our priorities • Tourism and experiences: developing the visiting industry through new, exciting destinations, and devising total solutions for experiences, where visitor services, especially food and meals, are important components. • Raw material production and added-value processing: implementing measures for added-value processing of local raw materials. For example, increasing the added value of local food products by associating them with experiences, developing delicacies or backing locally produced and organic products.

Vigorous rural businesses; we aim to have more companies in the area that produce and process raw materials. The area’s appeal will be enhanced by destination development


Viable rural businesses


51. Leader Landsbygd Halland This rural area is characterised by its rich and varied countryside and by its proximity to the coastal area of Halland, with its greater population density and visitor numbers. It has old traditions in agriculture and forestry, and its land-based industries still play a major role today. It offers excellent raw materials, which should be refined in order to strengthen the local labour market. The companies that are active locally make up a wide spectrum of different fields. The central and western parts of this area are dominated by small companies, while the majority of those in the eastern parts are of medium size. Around 99,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipality of Hylte as well as parts of the municipalities of Kungsbacka, Varberg, Falkenberg, Halmstad and Laholm.

part of the common development of the region, for example in designing meeting-places and networking among companies and other actors. It is also an active participant in the collaboration with other involved parts for the joint development of Halland in the following priority areas.

Our vision

• Raw material production and added-value processing: implementing measures for added-value processing of local raw materials. For example, increasing the added value of local food products by associating them with experiences, developing delicacies or backing locally produced and organic products.

Our priorities • Tourism and experiences: developing the visiting industry through new, exciting destinations, and devising total solutions for experiences, where visitor services, especially food and meals, are important components. • Good living environment to attract small-scale businesses: providing attractive rural housing increases purchasing power and attracts company owners and their employees.

A viable rural business sector with attractive housing locations. The area’s appeal will grow thanks to destination development, packaging and marketing of the rural experiences on offer all year round, where especially food and meals play an important part. Attractive housing locations will tempt even more companies to relocate. The area is also









Viable businesses and attractive housing locations 105

52. Leader Linné The landscape of this area is very typical of Småland with its abundant forests, open fields and numerous lakes. This was where the storm ”Gudrun” wreaked the most havoc, which accounts for the many large forest areas that are now completely bare. Manufacturing, and above all engineering, make up the bulk of the business section, and the local labour market has been hit very hard by the current recession. Other characteristic features are the emphasis on timber, glass, art and design. Ingvar Kamprad, founder of the global IKEA concern, was born here, just outside the town of Älmhult, whose centre now houses his first IKEA store. Around 92,000 people live here, and this area comprises the municipalities of Alvesta, Markaryd and Älmhult as well as parts of the municipalities of Växjö, Ljungby and Värnamo.

Our vision

Developing unique local assets supporting enterprising individuals and laying the foundations for a sustainable and creative society, in an area that sparkles with abundant

activity and creativity. There are enterprising, forceful and committed people and a great potential to be tapped here, in the form of resources and unique natural and cultural values, which are to be harnessed and enhanced. This will be done in a sustainable manner, in an ecological, economic and social perspective.

Our priorities • Youth participation: responding to their commitment, views and interests. • The environment and climate change: favouring expertise inputs in the fields of renewable energy and ecological products. • Company development: spotlighting and marketing tourism operators on a local and global market. • New ideas: favouring new ideas in evaluating project applications. • Integration: enhancing integration so that everyone feels that they are a part of society.


Cross-boundary collaboration enhances rural competitiveness 107

53. Leader Småland Sydost This area is heavily influenced by agriculture, forestry and the visiting industry. Hunting, fishing and water issues are other important common features. Throughout history, there has been a continuous tradition of entrepreneurship in such fields as culture and handicrafts that is to be harnessed and enhanced. These two areas were formerly the source of much of the entrepreneurial spirit that was to be found here. The inhabitants simply produced what was required to meet the needs of their business. The forests, waterways and marshlands were key elements in iron making but later on also in the glassblowing and traditional crafts, which came to dominate the area. Around 66,000 people live in the area, which comprises the municipalities of Emmaboda, Lessebo, Nybro, Tingsryd, Torsås and Uppvidinge.

Our vision

A strong and well-developed area for all its inhabitants, with an accessible, high profile range of goods and services. Our local communities will be dynamic and active with committed individuals within a well-integrated rural area. Positive development and powerful initiatives will be promoted, and concerted efforts will result in a viable rural area that favours sustainable development and a good quality of life.

Our priorities • The visiting industry: giving priority to innovative tourism services, which will also contribute towards enhancing the social qualities of a village or neighbourhood and improve accessibility. • Traditional crafts, arts and handicrafts: spreading an awareness of all these professions, making use of professional skills, and designing a model for apprentice training. • Food and foodstuffs: stimulating local food production, added-value processing and product development, as well as measures to broaden the basis of small and medium-sized agricultural companies. • Village development: measures that result in livelier village centres, supporting families with children, stimulating permanent residence and an influx of new inhabitants and promoting communications. • Forests and forestry: stimulating forest owners and operations for the added-value processing of forest raw materials, nurturing green companies for the production of different bio-fuels and small-scale energy production. • Natural surrounding, water and cultural heritage: encouraging schools, pre-schools and voluntary associations, as well as supporting educational projects on the history of the local community and its natural and cultural heritage.


Concerted efforts can make this area thrive 109

54. Leader Skånes Ess Skånes Ess combines all the features of Skåne County. Bewitching woods, glittering waters, wide, open plains, ridges and valleys. Sparsely populated in the north and densely populated in the south. Historically, the area is associated with the seventeenth century pro-Danish guerrillas who fought against the Swedes, large- and smallscale food production, and a range of gastronomic delights. The business sector is largely derived from its landbased industries, the largest of which are agriculture and forestry, which together account for more than 2,000 companies, and there are many links between these sectors and modern industry. These include the production of spirits, starch and other foodstuffs, construction, timber processing, quarrying and papermaking, to give a number of examples, while the local private sector is dominated by manufacturing. Around 92,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Osby, Bromölla and Östra Göinge as well as parts of Kristianstad.

Our vision

We aim at attracting residents, business people and visitors through positive and sustainable rural development of the entire area. We will use our resources and potential to support and implement development efforts characterised by local commitment and influence, interaction, consensus, mutual respect and shared responsibilities.

Our priorities • Housing to thrive in: creating surroundings that make rural living attractive and uncomplicated. • Action and development: stimulating rural business and promoting measures for higher profitability. • Visits and experiences: encouraging stakeholders in the visiting industry to make an active investment in greater tourism.


Attracting residents, business people and visitors


55. Leader Blekinge This Leader area extends from the archipelago in the south to the forests of the north. There is a considerable degree of co-operation among the local development groups, the public-sector bodies and the business community at this juncture between the old industrial structures based on iron and steel and the IT-companies of the new economy that are fuelled by brain power. In a European context Blekinge looks towards the new EU member states of Eastern Europe. Around 61,000 people live in Blekinge, which comprises the municipalities of Karlskrona, Ronneby, Karlshamn, Olofström and Sölvesborg.

Our vision

The countryside and archipelago will offer a guaranteed quality of life. The inhabitants choose to stay close to their roots, and families with children are encouraged to move into the villages. Town and country develop in tandem, while new creative ideas are utilized for methods and solutions that address local needs, at the same time as obstacles are eliminated. Priority goes to projects involving several actors, where no single party can solve the problems. New methods and the use of new technology are some of the factors in this blueprint for success.

Our priorities • Local food production: facilitating efforts by entrepreneurs to develop and sell their products, devising cooperative projects in the field of legislation, designing premises, product development, logistics and marketing. • Fishing areas: developing new forms of entrepreneurship and new products and services in the fishing industry. • Tourism: producing new forms of collaboration and new products in the field of tourism, new IT solutions for reservations and payments as well as marketing, preferably at a European level. • The Baltic Region: establishing cross-border collaboration among different forms of entrepreneurship. • The environment and energy: devising new forms of entrepreneurship relating to the development of environmentally friendly production as well as the preservation of sites of cultural and historical interest.


Lighting a candle and keeping the flame alive


56. Leader Skåne Nordväst Norra This attractive rural area possesses unique natural surroundings and cultural heritage sites. Its features include the sea, forests, farmland and many interesting villages. There is wide scope for energetic outdoor activities ranging from rehabilitation and recreation to adventure sports. The area is close to major cities, to Denmark and the rest of continental Europe. The urban environments of the Malmö-Lund and Copenhagen-Helsingør regions make their presence felt, thanks to an extensive network of roads and railways. Around 88,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Bjuv, Båstad, Klippan, Åstorp, Ängelholm, and Örkelljunga as well as parts of Svalöv.

Our priorities

Our vision

• A profitable combination of added-value forestry and nature conservancy: collaboration and added-value processing to transform small-scale forestry into a profitable operation with an emphasis on nature conservation and biodiversity.

Strong and active local communities together with a wellintegrated rural area guarantee positive growth and a high level of resourcefulness. The well-being of the population is a crucial feature of life here, and there are unique resources for outdoor activities, health and recreation. The area is the Swedish region with the best reputation for local food production and consumption, while its trademark is its sophisticated food culture based on healthy and pure raw materials. Our area is a gastronomic region with the focus on natural resources and village life that is appreciated by both visitors and the permanent population.

• Growth powered by nature and culture tourism: enhancing the unique values of the natural and cultural landscape, which is the primary resource for the local visiting industry. • The most self-sufficient Swedish gastronomic region: making a commitment to a varied range of local food products, small-scale added-value processing and smart distribution. • A renaissance for village living: developing the area’s villages into the most attractive housing options with a basis for a good quality of life.

• Pride in the local community: stimulating interest in one’s own home region and enhancing its natural and cultural heritage.


A gastronomic region with the focus on natural resources and small-scale village life 115

57. Leader Skåne Nordväst Södra This entire rural area is but a short distance from major urban centres that offer rural residents a great range of facilities for education, employment, recreation and consumption. In return, the countryside offers city dwellers goods, services, recreation and memorable experiences. It contains many popular attractions and unspoiled areas of natural beauty including country-house estates, several protected areas and other local visitor destinations. Water is a key feature in the form of the long and varied coastline and the island of Ven in Öresund, as well as local rivers and waterways, which all play an important role in all kinds of outdoor activities. Around 75,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Höganäs, Helsingborg, Landskrona and Svalöv, as well as the parish of Kågeröd-Röstånga and the cities of Landskrona and Helsingborg.

Our vision

The rich natural and cultural heritage of this area is to be well administered and enhanced to create favourable surroundings for both those who live and work there as well as its visitors. Enterprise culture is promoted, along with new networks and meeting-places. There is a major influx of new residents and there is a commitment to invest in well-being for the inhabitants, the visiting industry and outdoor leisure activities such as hiking, biking and riding.

Our priorities • The cultivated landscape: preserving, enhancing and utilising the cultural and natural landscape. • The good life: stimulating rural development for health and well-being. • Entrepreneurship: providing and promoting opportunities for entrepreneurs by means of networks, interaction and expertise enhancement. • Access and visibility for our inhabitants and visitors: creating local brands, providing physical and knowledgebased routes into the landscape, improving access and upgrading public communications and IT. • The next generation, the social basis of rural life: providing viable services, ensuring potential for equality, integration and social cohesion, and developing a variety of housing options.


Beaches, sea and coastline within easy reach of the city


58. Leader Lundaland Lundaland is a rural area that extends from Öresund in the west to the wooded slopes of the Romele Ridge in the east. It contains manor houses and stately homes, golf courses, and paths for cycling, horse riding and walking. Its natural features range from the sea to lakes, rivers, plains, forest and ridges. It contains the unique Uppåkra archaeological site, Scandinavia’s oldest stone church in Dalby and many other attractions. At the heart of this area lies the city of Lund, a centre of learning and culture, which possesses an infectious creativity and innovative force. There are around 80,000 inhabitants in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Kävlinge and Staffanstorp as well as parts of Lund, Eslöv and Lomma.

Our priorities

Our vision

• Experiences: promoting visitor destinations and events and also expanding the visiting industry.

• Local development: developing rural community spirit, meeting-places, local services and neighbourhood democracy, while fostering a sense of local responsibility. • Rural employment: establishing links among the public, private and non-profit sectors in order to provide more jobs and opportunities for work training or rehabilitation. • Rural entrepreneurship: stimulating entrepreneurship and supporting rural business initiatives. • The power of Lundaland: stimulating the power of innovation and collaboration among the public, private and non-profit sectors.

We are aiming at a strong sense of community and identity throughout this area, where entrepreneurship is stimulated and the visiting industry is a major factor. There is room for companies and innovations to grow in a manner that creates new jobs, while both the quality of life and public health are enhanced in the countryside, whose residents have great opportunities to explore their home district, to grow and to realise their own new ideas. Lundaland is a powerful, content-rich brand that is easy to remember, while its strength, knowledge, communication, creativity and culture are all key factors for development.


• The health of Lundaland: forging a sense of community and commitment and providing meeting-places with a focus on health and the environment. • Natural and cultural heritage: conserving unspoiled areas of natural beauty and making them accessible, and also highlighting important cultural heritage sites. • Explore Lundaland: making the area a more visible and attractive visitor destination through a variety of media: Lundaland-brand goods, the Internet and also a network of tourist offices.

Strength, knowledge, culture, creativity and communication 119

59. Leader Lag PH i Snapphanebygd The PH Local Action Group in Northern Scania covers an area that was once part of the border between Sweden and Denmark. This rural area is relatively homogeneous with its cultivated fields and its pastures set among lakes and waterways, open farmland and a number of ridges. Agriculture and forestry are among the most common business sectors, along with trade and commerce, construction, legal and financial services, science, technology and manufacturing. Around 57.000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Hässleholm and Perstorp.

• Infrastructure: promoting better communications for local inhabitants and business people as well as providing a framework for commuting and distance working.

Our vision

• Diversification and quality of life: stimulating a multistranded business community, social services, infrastructure, attractive housing developments and access to quiet recreational areas.

Lag PH i Snapphanebygd will be an attractive rural area for people to live and work in and for companies to thrive and prosper, with the complementary contrasts of its diversity harnessed to its development. The crises faced by its harsh landscape, agriculture, population and high service level are transformed into a wealth of life-giving potential. Collaboration will be established among a variety of actors and operations. This will ensure growth and fresh opportunities in the form of higher employment, housing, services, business, education and other essentials.

Our priorities • Competitiveness: stimulating agriculture and forestry along with expertise enhancement and network building as a means of supporting entrepreneurship.

• Environment and countryside: finding ways to grow energy crops and achieve a sustainable energy supply, conserving wetlands and marshes, and safeguarding meadows and pastureland. • Biological diversity and a varied landscape: developing riding tracks in open spaces, restoring grazing lands, enhancing environmental expertise and recreational value.

• Business development through micro-companies: providing higher levels of advisory services, leadership development and mentorship. • Tourism: greater interaction among tourist companies, development of experience-based, fishing and nature tourism. • Rural youth: ensuring opportunities for young people to live in the countryside and run their own companies.


Turning a crisis into an opportunity to keep the countryside alive


60. Leader MittSkåne In the southern part of MittSkåne, the Scania plain and its many farms dominate the landscape. At the centre of this area lie the Ringsjöarna lakes, which are of vital importance to local businesses, outdoor activities and recreation. They are also a symbol of Central Scania and function as a connecting link. The entire area is characterized by its rural proximity to larger towns and its natural beauty. Woodlands predominate in the northern part of Central Scania, where many of its inhabitants derive their income from the tourism trade. The many stately homes and manor houses reflect a rich cultural heritage, along with numerous medieval churches that dot the countryside. Here, ancient agriculture and forestry traditions, interesting historical sites and beauty spots support a hospitality industry that provides a solid base for the ongoing development of this rural haven. Central Scania has around 56,000 inhabitants and comprises the municipalities of Höör and Hörby as well as parts of Eslöv.

Our vision

The countryside shall live and prosper. Its natural beauty and cultural values are to be protected, cared for and showcased. Rural renewal and economic development are to be promoted so that more people come here to live and the commercial base is widened. Its young people are commit-

ted and harness the forces of diversity and social interaction. Visitors will find a wealth of enjoyable experiences. Places of great natural beauty and of historical interest will be developed and growth will be based on ecological, social and economic sustainability.

Our priorities • Local growth: rural competitiveness and development, the founding of small companies, greater diversity and a range of local activities. • Enjoyment of the countryside and cultural values: a good environment and sustainable development, biological diversity, clean water, visitor potential linked to small-scale potential within agriculture and the hospitality industry, showcasing local history and culture, greater access to the countryside and small-scale tourism. • Youth issues: active and meaningful leisure for young people by promoting physical activity, establishing positive meeting places, stimulating and supporting initiatives and creative thinking, as well as promoting greater integration and understanding.


Let the countryside live and prosper 123

61. Leader Ystad-Österlenregionen The countryside in the south-eastern corner of Scania has many faces. One of them is the Österlen plain, a patchwork of gentle slopes with wheat fields, orchards and broad-leaf woodlands, with coastal areas to the south and east, and a multitude of small but dynamic villages. A rich cultural heritage is on display at almost every turn, and the area hosts a wealth of historical sites. Sole traders and small companies dominate commercial life, and the main business sectors are agriculture, trade and commerce, handicrafts, fishing, the hospitality industry, foodstuffs and a variety of cultural activities. Around 78,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Simrishamn, Sjöbo, Tomelilla and Ystad.

For young people there are special opportunities to play a part and in doing so shape their own future.

Our vision

• A welcoming area: developing our potential as an attractive destination for visitors through improved access and an extended season.

Looking to the future, the area will enjoy a unique potential thanks to its countryside, farming areas, climate, commercial profile, potential as an excursion base for visitors and nature lovers, places of interest and heritage sites. It is the ideal place to live and work, with everything close at hand, from major urban areas to continental Europe. Our inhabitants have a say in the development and enjoy a feeling of commitment, human warmth and a sense of involvement.

Our priorities • An enterprising area: safeguarding entrepreneurs, enhancing commercial potential, improving business expertise and launching collaboration and development initiatives. • A sustainable area: encouraging the awareness of sustainable development and lifecycle thinking. • A creative and active area: deriving our strength through measures that include harnessing our traditions of creativity and resourcefulness.

• A nourishing area: expanding small-scale local food production, opportunities to enjoy local produce and primary production.


Countryside that is alive the whole year round and an area of great beauty and charm 125

62. Leader Söderslätt Söderslätt is the most southerly of all Sweden’s Leader rural development areas, strikingly located where sky and sea meet, and the rippling fields stretch out along a wide horizon. It provides the delights of the countryside close to urban centres, such as Trelleborg in the south and the Malmö-Copenhagen region in the west. Naturally, those who live and work here are influenced by the many aspects of city life. Also on offer are accessible recreation, relaxation and a chance for city dwellers to make their choice of our goods and services and to enjoy our attractions. The rapid development of the Öresund region has brought a steady, large-scale influx of newcomers into the whole of this rural area. Around 98,000 people live in this area, which comprises the municipalities of Skurup, Svedala and Vellinge and parts of the municipalities of Trelleborg and Malmö.

Our vision

At the end of the Leader programme period the people of Söderslätt will have a strong sense of community, well-run services for daily life and viable entrepreneurial skills, while successfully promoting their area. Everything is interlinked; a living rural district where people can live and work keeps the countryside alive, and ensures the survival of attractions and activities that bring in eager visitors.


Our priorities • The good rural life: recreation and the beauties of nature a stone’s throw from home, new places to meet and voluntary groups to join, local activities and events, services and care. • The area and its features: improving our expertise, mentorship, advice on preserving the cultural and natural heritage of agriculture and forestry, biological diversity, organic farming and produce, improvements to water quality and local energy production and supply. • Entrepreneurship: increasing the production and consumption of local goods and services, mentorship and expertise enhancement, providing opportunities to work with traditional handicrafts, networks and co-operative bodies linking entrepreneurs, diversifying and developing agriculture, forestry and the fishing industry as well as increasing co-operation. • Relations with the city: recreation close to home, wider access to public or community travel and green freight services, collaboration among associations, companies and industries as well as more widely available educational opportunities and expertise enhancement. • Söderslätt for the visitor: establishing bodies for collaboration in the field of services, the experience industry and visitor activities, increasing access to the countryside for visitors, producing solutions and increasing access to public or community travel.

Countryside close at hand 127

63. Leader Gotland Rural Gotland has its open farming landscape with fields, meadows, enclosed pasturelands, forest pasture and coastal meadows. Its features include hills, weathered, erosion shaped stones known as rauks, stony fields covered by a thin layer of vegetation, alvar (limestone shingle), sandy beaches and fishing villages. The island is used as a recreational area for both tourists and the local inhabitants and the countryside has a very diverse business sector where a large number of fields are represented. Cultural life on Gotland is very extensive, with both national and regional institutions, active local voluntary associations as well as a wide range of training courses at different levels and in different subjects. Local design is well known throughout Sweden, which is reflected by the fact many creative and professional people, as well as those with cultural interests, have chosen to settle here. Around 36,000 people live in the Leader Gotland area, which comprises Gotland Municipality excluding the town of Visby.

Our vision

Gotland will be a sustainable society with a strong local commitment. Agricultural and forestry companies as well as other rural entrepreneurs will be able to collaborate with respect to common needs and conditions for local development and the business sector. The latter will be undergoing

diversification, while employment prospects along with a higher quality of life for rural inhabitants, while a sustainable use of all rural resources is being promoted.

Our priorities • Improving agricultural and forestry competitiveness: enhancing the degree of processing and production, strengthening micro-companies and stimulating new solutions for renewable energy. • Improving the environment and rural land areas: stimulating new collaborative solutions within sustainable land, water and energy use as well as developing new energy solutions. • Improving the quality of life, widening the business base and promoting the development of the rural economy: stimulating cross-sectoral collaboration within rural development and developing new activities within the housing and experience sectors, innovative housing and service formats, new financing solutions and focusing on target-group oriented efforts with regard to young people.


A sustainable society with a strong local commitment


Leader creates development! Leader is a method for rural development. It has been used within the EU since 1991 and in Sweden since 1996, and is now part of the Swedish rural development programme 2007-2013. The Leader method creates sustainable local development and prosperity through dialogue and cooperation between the non-profit, the public and the private sector. Sweden has 63 Leader areas. Each area has outlined a local development strategy and chosen a steering committee, known as LAG (Local Action Group), with representatives from the three sectors; the non-profit, the private and the public. LAG decides which project ideas are to be prioritised for funding, based on which ideas are believed to contribute the most to reaching the goals in the strategy. In total, SEK 2.4 billion in public funding has been distributed to the 63 areas. In addition, SEK 0.8 billion has been provided by local private financers. Each Leader area has a Leader office assigned to mobilise efforts, receive applications, and support and coordinate projects to create the largest possible development in the region. Leader is important in order to reach the goals of the rural development programme, due to the increased value that comes with fresh ideas, influence and cooperation. The overall goal is to promote entrepreneurship, growth and employment as well as creating attractive countryside regions with a high environmental ambition.


Photo: Cover Per Jonsson, Pellewood. Page 4-5 Polaris: Per-Olov Wikberg, Per G Norén, page 6-7 Mare Boreale: Göran Wallin, page 8-9 Tornedalen: Övertorneå kommun: Jenny Söderström, Peter Delerholm, page 10-11 Urnära: Markus Tiburzi, page 12-13 Spira Fyrkanten: Jenny Björk, page 14-15 Trekom: Per-Olov Wikberg, page 16-17 Höga Kusten: Pelle Norlander, Peder Sundström, Anders Eliasson, Kramfors Turism, page 18-19 Lappland: Leopold Sjöström, page 20-21 Timråbygd: Lena Liljemark, page 22-23 Sollefteå: Lena Dahlgren, page 24-25 3sam: Jan-Owe Johansson, page 26-27 Storsjöbygden: Nina Andersson, page 28-29 Åres Gröna Dalar: Catarina Nordin, Mark Thorpe, Wild Exposure, Magnus Dahlin, page 30-31 Mittland: Åsa Grip, Charlotte Strandlund, Åsa Grip, page 32-33 Hälsingebygden: JonLars i Alfta, page 34-35 Södra Fjällen: Nina Fjätvall, page 36-37 Dalälvarna: Ulban Wigert, page 38-39 Falun-Borlänge: Ulf Palm, page 40-41 Gästrikebygden: Gästrikland Turism, page 42-43 Nedre Dalävlen: Kia Olofsdotter, page 44-45 Upplandsbygd: Kim Scharafinski, page 46-47 UROSS: Gert Straschewski, page 48-49 Gränslandet: Anja Veinhede Sommer, page 50-51 Bergslagen Per-Olov Wikberg, page 52-53 Norra Mälarstranden: Charlotta Heimersson, page 54-55 Södertälje Landsbygd: Per G Norén, page 56-57 Västra Mälardalen: Andreas Svensson, page 58-59 Inlandet: Lennart Hansson, page 60-61 Kustlinjen, Sörmlands turismutveckling AB, page 62-63 Folkungaland: Richard Börjeson, Ragnar Ronneteg, Ingvald Frassevik, page 64-65 Mellansjölandet: Marita Fehrm, page 66-67 Värmlands BergsLAG: Mats Pettersson, page 68-69 Närheten: Markus Tiburzi, Sanne Lundbäck, page 70-71 Växtlust Värmland: Marie Petzäll, page 72-73 Norra Skaraborg: Maria Gustavsson, page 74-75 Dalsland och Årjäng: Kerstin Söderlund, page 76-77 Ranrike–Norra Bohuslän: Carin Alfredsson, page 78-79 Terra et Mare: Johanna Melkersson, Ulrika Holmgren, Sigvard Utbult, Rolf Hallin, page 80-81 Göta Älv: Markus Tiburzi, Mats Pettersson, page 82-83 Göteborgs Insjörike: Per G Norén, Stefan Larsson, page 84-85 Västra Skaraborg: Rune Torstensson, Jesper Anhede, page 86-87 Östra Skaraborg: Tuula Saarimäki, page 88-89 Sommenbygd: Markus Tiburzi, Leader Sommenbygd, page 90-91 Astrid Lindgrens hembygd: Markus Tiburzi, Mats Pettersson, page 92-93 Kustlandet: Johnny Franzen, page 94-95 Kalmar-Öland: Kalmarsunds kustmiljö, Leaderkontoret Kalmar Öland, Agneta Gustavsson, page 96-97 Västra Småland: Martin Pavicic, Markus Tiburzi, Mats Pettersson, page 98-99 Mitt i Småland: Mitt i Småland, Magnus Färjhage, page 100-101 Sjuhärad: Markus Tiburzi, Janne Petersson, page 102-103: Kustbyggd Halland: Patrik Leonardsson, page 104-105 Landsbygd Halland: Markus Tiburzi, Patrik Leonardsson, page 106-107 Linné: Anette Olsson, page 108-109 Småland Sydost: Urban Wigert, page 110-111 Skånes Ess: Mats Pettersson, Markus Tiburzi, page 112-113 Blekinge: Åsa Olsson, page 114-115 Skåne Nord-väst Norra, A-C Thörnblad, page 116-117 Skåne Nordväst Södra: Britt-Marie Andrén, page 118-119 Lundaland: Gunnar Petersson, page 120-121 Lag PH i Snapphanebygd: Connie Asterman, page 122-123 Mitt Skåne: Lars Anshelm, Markus Tiburzi, page 124-125 Ystad-Österlenregionen: Leader Ystad-Österlen, page 126-127 Söderslätt: Jenny Kornmacher, page 128-129 Gotland: Annelie Söderström. Other photos:


S-551 82 Jönköping Phone: 036-15 50 00 E-mail: OVR198 – 2010



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