Inderscience Publishers

Experiments in sustainable rural livelihood in Finland

This paper addresses rural development and farm level action in Finland by posing the following main questions: What is the pioneering potential of small-scale entrepreneurship in enhancing rural sustainability? What are the specialisations feasible for such entrepreneurship in the present societal circumstances? What kind of local networking does it take to sustain on-farm activity for rural sustainability? We present empirical evidence from Central Finland about the ways in which both local food entrepreneurship and farm-based renewable energy production add to the rural livelihood and particularly to its social dimension. It is concluded that there is a potential overall impact on sustainable rural livelihood generated by novel entrepreneurship in local food and heat production.

Keywords: rural development, rural sustainability, farming, multifunctionality, small-scale entrepreneurship, rural-environmental policy, local food production, renewable energy production, Finland, sustainable development, agriculture, local networking, rural livelihoods, heat production

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