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Project Wealth Action Research group hits the Six Months Milestone

In the past six months The EuroMed WEALTH LSED Action Research Group met for an inter-regional and interdisciplinary knowledge exchanges on Local Sustainable Economic Development (LSED) in the Euromed region. The group consists of 20 researchers and professionals from Italy, Portugal, The Palestinian authority and Israel, from diverse disciplines: Economics, Tourism, Environment, and Anthropology. The group conducted 3 video-conference meetings, in which researchers presented and discussed 3 broad topics.
In the first meeting Prof. David J. Hess, author of “Localist Movements in a Global Economy" (MIT press) introduced the emergence of local sustainable economic development research paradigm.

The second meeting focused on Regional measures for well being and social progress. While current research and policy efforts on indicators of well being are focusing at the national and municipal level, WEALTH researchers discussed the need to redefined and develop conceptual framework that will take into consideration the organic formations of areas and regions. The meeting on well being indicators included presentations made by Mr. Tommaso Rondinella, Ms. Elisabetta Segre of Lunaria and ISTAT and Dr. Anat Itay-Sarig of the JDC Institute for Leadership and Governance in Israel.

The third meeting on Creative Industries flourished in the interdisciplinary perspective. Research on Creative Industries and local cultures as important contributors to local economic development were presented from different angles by Prof. Pierluigi Montalbano of Sapienza University of Rome, Prof. Calogero Montalbano of Polytechnical University of Bari, Dr. Sarab Abu-Rabia-Queder of Ben-Gurion University. Works were then discussed by Dr. Amalia Sa’ar of Haifa University, Israel. In the meeting the importance of interdisciplinary research emerged when definitions of culture were discussed and broadened by the participants.
Looking ahead, meetings will focus on sustainable tourism; finance and LSED; local food systems. In December 2013 the group will hold an International convention in Ben Gurion University, in Israel. In the convention, group members will present Working Papers on the above mentioned topics.

WEALTH Action Research Group is facilitated by Shatil, The Negev center for Regional Development in Ben Gurion University, and Mandel Center for Leadership in the Negev. Project Wealth promotes an alternative economic paradigm, whereby wealth is defined by the well being of local communities and its sustainable richness, in the Euro-Mediterranean region.
Project Wealth, implemented under the ENPI CBC Mediterranean Sea Basin Programme (www.enpicbcmed.eu), and is financed,[for an amount of 1,943,876 Euro, by the European Union through the European Neighbourhood and Partnership Instrument. The ENPI CBC Med Programme aims at reinforcing cooperation between the European Union and partner countries regions placed along the shores of the Mediterranean Sea.

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