Mid  September 2014, the Erasmus+ “IBrave”- project (Improvement of Branding for Rural Areas through Vocational Education) was officially approved. RESOC Mid-West-Flanders/Midwest Development, together with several other European partners, started up this project by the end of 2014.

Motivation: Many (mainly small and medium sized) municipalities in Europe suffer from a lack of knowledge/methodology with regard to the clear and accurate  definition of their own economic profile and also  struggle with the development and implementation of  a correct and positive way of marketing their strengths and challenging their weaknesses.

The participating IBrave municipalities in Spain (Ceuti), Sweden (Tranemo), Denmark (Lemvig)and Belgium/Flanders (15 authorities within the region of Mid West Flanders, including the cities of Roeselare, Izegem and Tielt) joined hands , in order to exchange expertise, experiences and good practices. They  all have a fairly similar socio-economic profile  (often a rather industrial environment, cities that are rather small in size and often quite close to bigger cities (which increases the danger of  brain drain), and, in marketing terms, a sometimes rather vaguely expressed or promoted economic profile,…). Through the implementation of the IBrave project, the partners want to assist the local (and regional/national) authorities in developing a higher and more effective/professional  way of making themselves and their companies more attractive to inhabitants, newcomers and visitors.

They want to create a ‘toolbox’ which will allow the participating authorities to clearly analyze their own situation (SWOT)and to develop a logical, honest and future oriented, attractive marketing plan for the city or the region, based on actual strengths. Ideally the cities will be able to present themselves as a great place to work in, live in and recreate in.
The goal of IBrave is to provide the participating local governments with this user-friendly set of tools, in order to be able to independently develop and refine, a sustainable and effective local branding policy, always in accordance with the regional, national and European strategic priorities.

RESOC Mid-West-Flanders is one of the active partners within the project and will be organizing the third of four project-IBrave seminars, in november 2015.  The goal of the seminar will be to promote interaction between Mid West Flemish local authorities and the participating IBrave partner organizations and authorities.

Click here for the first edition of the IBRAVE-newsletter!
Click here for the second edition of the IBRAVE-newsletter!