Why does research and innovation on agricultural and rural digital transformation matter?

Digital technologies have the potential to revolutionise agriculture by helping farmers work more precisely, efficiently and sustainably.

Data-driven insights can improve decision-making and practices and help increase environmental performance while making farming jobs more attractive to younger generations.

Digital technologies also have the potential to offer consumers greater transparency as to how their food is produced. They offer opportunities to renew business models in value chains by connecting producers and consumers in innovative ways.

Beyond farming, digital technologies are key for making rural communities more attractive, smart and sustainable as well as for reducing problems related to remoteness and improving access to services.

Research and innovation is vitally important to facilitate and accelerate digital transformation in agriculture and rural areas for the benefit of European citizens and businesses.

The EU has been active in recent years undertaking research and innovation activities laying the ground for digitalised and data-empowered European agriculture and rural areas.

Strategic interventions support:

  • the uptake of digital technologies,
  • increased research and innovation investments,
  • crucial assessment of the socioeconomic impacts of digitalisation.

Funding opportunities

  • Horizon 2020

    Calls for proposals related to digital transformation in agriculture and rural areas are spread across numerous schemes in Horizon 2020. This page lists them and explains how you can apply.

  • European agricultural fund for rural development

    The rural development policy supports innovation through a range of interventions, including the European innovation partnership for agriculture (EIP-AGRI).

  • LIFE programme

    Some digital transformation in agriculture and rural areas related calls may be found in this programme.

Collaboration and jobs

Projects and results

Scientific publications, tools and databases

  • Scientific publications 

    Scientific publications produced by the European Commission's Joint Research Centre (JRC).

  • Scientific research tools and databases 

    The Commission's Joint Research Centre compiles databases and develops software and modelling tools.

  • EU Open Data Portal 

    Single point of access to open data produced by the EU institutions. All data is free to use for commercial and non-commercial purposes.

  • OpenAIRE

    You can access all scientific publications from Horizon 2020 via OpenAIRE.

  • Copernicus

    Access to agriculture data from the Copernicus programme.