Area-based approaches are losing the essence of local targeting: LEADER/CLLD in the Czech Republic



Year of publication 2021
Type Article in Periodical
Magazine / Source European Planning Studies
MU Faculty or unit

Faculty of Economics and Administration

Keywords Community-led local development;area-based approach; local action group; top-down approach; LEADER
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Description Since its accession to the EU, the Czech Republic has gradually strengthened its support for area-based approaches in local development. In the light of the increasing financial support and the growing number of local action groups (LAGs), optimism seems to be appropriate that the elements of local governance have the potential to be implemented in the Czech Republic now more than ever before. Community-Led Local Development (CLLD) in the programming period of 2014–2020, however, throws away the advantage of having the local focus, one of the essential elements of integrated territorial development tools. We back up this claim with an analysis of the implementation process of the CLLD method at the national level, the evaluation of the strategic and implementation parts of the 43 strategies of CLLD LAGs, and in-depth interviews with 23 LAG managers. Our results show that the offer only partially meets the identified local needs of LAGs. The final strategy of CLLD has been created in the background of the pragmatic approach of actors in the territory influenced by the defined range of topics. The potential for the strengthening of local governance is limited, while a hidden top-down effect is applied.
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