Centre for Regional and Tourism Research, Denmark, hereby invites you to participate in the North Atlantic Forum Conference 2009 taking place on the island of Bornholm on September 23-25th. The conference theme, Bridging Regional Divides – New Forms of Rural and Urban Interaction in the North, will particularly focus on the issues of governance and urban-rural partnerships as well as knowledge mobilisation and innovation dynamics in the interplay between urban and rural regions.
Traditionally the urban-rural "division of labour" has entailed a system of mutual exchanges, where cities and metropolitan regions provide access to attractive jobs, higher education, public services, cultural activities, and main infrastructure, while rural areas have supplied agricultural products, provided leisure opportunities and attractive nature experiences. But how valid are these functions and roles today?
In a world increasingly driven by the ‘fourth’ economy - the experience and creative economy - new possibilities are opening up. Rural producers are beginning to offer ‘authentic’ and hand- crafted products and services for an increasingly identity-seeking consumer culture. Furthermore, members of the creative class are relocating to rural areas, establishing new businesses and contributing to novel types of local entrepreneurship.
As a consequence, new forms of innovation and knowledge dynamics are permeating the rural and peripheral landscape. This in turn indicates a reconfiguration of the traditional urban- rural relationship, as expressed in the initiatives by national and regional policy makers alike. Pivotal in this development are issues relating to governance – encompassing policy and decision-making as well as economic and business development – and, not least to the role of higher education, research and competence development.
The North Atlantic Forum
The conference is arranged as part of the North Atlantic Forum (NAF), which is an informal network made up of researchers and regional policy-makers and practitioners from a number of peripheral areas around the edges of the North Atlantic. NAF was born out of the North Atlantic Islands Program (1994-98), and the Bornholm conference is the fifth since the inaugural NAF in Prince Edward Island, Canada, 2000. In the spirit of the North Atlantic Forum this conference seeks to provide an informed dialogue and interaction between academics, regional and local leaders, both from public and private sectors, and practitioners.
The Conference Format
Dialogue and interaction between the participants will be provided on several levels: state of the art key-note speeches in plenum; thematic and informal workshops in a mix of academic papers, facilitated debates and practical case presentations; technical study tours combining on-the-site experiences with discussions.
The workshops will be covering on the following sub-themes:
Workshop 1: Policy integration and territorial cohesion
Workshop 2: Local Action Groups in Europe
Workshop 3: Regional and municipal restructuring – Cases from the Nordic Countries
Workshop 4: National strategies and rural/island realities
Workshop 5: The politics and reality of place branding
Workshop 6: Knowledge dynamics in and between urban and rural/island regions
Workshop 7: Renewable and alternative energy
Workshop 8: Innovation the Rural Way
Workshop 9: Migration dynamics and human resources
Workshop 10: Cyber bridges – ICT and rural /island development
Each workshop will consist of 3-4 presentations (15 minutes), and a discussion (20 minutes) moderated by an appointed facilitator. Proposals for presentations will be approved by the Program Committee (see below).
Dates to remember
June 15 Deadline for proposals for presentations (between 400-600 words)
July 15 Acceptance notification on proposals for presentations
August 1 Deadline for registration
For further information about the conference keep your eye on www.crt.dk where a link to the conference web-site is set to be launched May 10th. Here you will find information on presentation proposals, updated program, registration details, travel and accommodation as well as suggestions for other activities and visits while being on Bornholm and in Scandinavia.
Contact persons at CRT:
Karin Topsö Larsen, consultant, +45 56440035 and Peter Billing, director, + 45 56440022
Dr Irene Novaczek
Director, Institute of Island Studies, University of Prince Edward Island
550 University Avenue, Charlottetown PE, Canada C1A 4P3
902 566 0386 (ph) 902 566 0756 (fax)