European policy consultants
Rural development and renewable energy

The RDPE Network

The role of the RDPE Network is to support the delivery of the programme through:
• Providing tools and opportunities for those involved in RDPE to share their ideas, practice and experience;
• Operating across the four axes and link information at EU, UK, national and local levels;
• Working with existing information exchange mechanisms and networks, to avoid duplication and maximise joint opportunities.

A small team that is part of the Defra Rural Communities Policy Unit has been tasked to act as the Network Unit to co-ordinate the RDPE Network and UK National Rural Network (these networks are requirements of the European Rural Development Regulation). The role of the Unit is to facilitate networking activities and co-ordinate services to stimulate the exchange of your ideas and experience. The team is led by Ed Dyson.

E-mail: rdpenetwork@defra.gsi.gov.uk
Tel: 0117 372 3634

At a UK level, the UK NRN links the four networks developed for the rural development
programmes in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. The UK NRN acts as a hub to
bring together ideas, information and practice from across the UK and facilitates communication
with the European Commission and the European Network for Rural Development.

Rural Development Programme for England (RDPE) is a seven year funding programme, with a budget of £3.7 billion, which will bring into effect the rural development priorities or axes of the European Rural Development Regulation:
Axis 1 Improving the competitiveness of the agriculture and forestry sectors;
Axis 2 Improving the environment and the countryside
Axis 3 Improving the quality of life in rural areas and encouraging diversification of the rural economy;
Axis 4 Building local capacity for employment and diversification.