Regional Development Network Cooperation Model VALUMA

The Government of Finland has ordered a study that produces information on different operating models and financing options for networking in regional development.

The aim of the project is to support the launching of regional and urban development network cooperation as well as the preparation of priorities and instruments for the national development of regions. The project is part of Government’s analysis, assessment and research activities. MDI implements the project together with Forefront Ltd and Nordregio. Nordregio conducts benchmarking study on international policies, tools and best practises (eg. RegLab in Sweden). In addition, two Finnish development networks are partners in the project: LHT network (MALverkosto) and regional cities network (Seutukaupunkiverkosto).

The main goal of the project is to:
1. Identify options for operating and funding models for networking in regional development;
2. Make suggestions for networking and partnership between urban, rural and island policies.

Information is needed to better support the networking and cross-sectoral development of regions. In addition, e.g. preparing the new Act on Regional Development and national priorities for regional development affects the operation of regional development networks and their expectations.

The project explores, what kind of operating model would best support the regions’ own and diverse networking and learning. Secondly, the project will look into how networks can support the implementation of priorities and objectives of the national development of regions. The project will focus on the ex-ante evaluation of the different operating models as well. The project identifies and evaluates the impacts of these different models. The options for operating models are assessed and formulated to suit the operational environment, the different regional levels, and both cities and rural areas.