ADEGUA, an organisation specialising in innovation at local level

Under the legal status of non-profit association of public interest, as declared by the government of Spain, ADEGUA promotes sustainable economic development through innovation within its geographical area (province of Cordoba, Spain).

ADEGUA applies in its work the Community-led Local Development methodology, based on the one established by the LEADER approach of the European Union. This methodology allows ADEGUA's governing bodies to decide directly on the use and application in the territory of the public funds it manages. Most of the representatives in these bodies belong to civil society.

All sectors are represented in ADEGUA ( institutional, political, social, economic... ) through local governments, political parties, civic associations, cooperatives, business associations, banks, local companies and individual citizens.

Moreover, ADEGUA works in various networks at regional, national and European level in which it collaborates with universities, foundations and associations of different kinds that share the goal of sustainable territorial development and innovation as a working method associated with process improvement, application of new methodologies or technologies to enhance the quality of life of the people and respond to their needs.

ADEGUA has wide experience and know-how regarding the detection and analysis of territorial needs. And that is so since its inception in 1996, responding to the mobilisation promoted by the European rural development policies, through pilot interventions first and then by means of creating a network of associations throughout the European rural territory, seeking modernisation and local sustainable development by innovation, entrepreneurship and a"bottom -up" approach.

In this context, ADEGUA has carried out analysis and diagnosis of the territory of action in each period of Community programming, thereby detecting the needs of the population and proposing intervention strategies to address them. This process has resulted in three strategic plans implemented in the periods 1996-1999, 2000-2006 and 2007-2013.

In addition, numerous studies and additional analysis have been conducted in the context of other ADEGUA's actions in the territory, through various European programmes and collaborations with R&D institutions also active at local level, connecting local needs in areas such as agriculture, with the research results of these centres of knowledge. These are some of the projects of innovation and development in agriculture in which ADEGUA currently participates:

  • "Improving the quality of the oil by a biological method of controlling the olive fly". This project is led by the International Campus of Agrifood Excellence (CEIA3) which includes the Universities of Cordoba, Jaen, Cadiz, Huelva, and Almeria.

  • "The development of the desert truffle cultivation in olive groves in the region", with the aim of increasing their profitability. This project is led by the Association for the Development of Irrigation in the Guadajoz Region along with CEIA3.

  • "Use of polyphenols from olive leaves", which aims to get new products from the leaves already in the mills. This project is being led by the Regulating Board for the “Aceite de Baena” designation of origin and the olive-growing cooperative German Baena and counts with the participation of researchers from the CEIA3 .

Meanwhile, ADEGUA has launched several pilot projects in order to validate open knowledge and open source technology in its territorial area, or to apply social innovation strategies responding to needs identified through direct contact with users. Examples include the following projects:

  • Training for the manufacture of machinery and tools for the use of olive by-products (biomass boiler) as a pilot experience in the industrial development of open source machines to promote the production by local companies, eliminating technological barriers in the access to industrial developments.

  • Training of local human resources in agriculture through courses in the use of vegetable oil in engines of agricultural vehicles and also training in agricultural machinery automation using open source hardware or software.

  • Pueblos Verdes” project, which defined an autonomous energy district in Albendin (Baena). It was presented as a good practice for Social Innovation at the Committee of the Regions in Brussels.

  • Andalusian Network of Intelligent Energy Eco- Districts (RADEI) , created together with other Andalusian territories as a tool to bring about change in the production model in our region based on a strategy of low-carbon economy, combating climate change and on the development of the bio-economy. This smart Eco- Districts will act as energy “living labs” to validate and test new processes, products or technologies.

Thus, ADEGUA's philosophy of intervention aligns with co-creation and open knowledge trends that enhance open innovation. This approach to the shared use of information and knowledge guides our communication policy, as well as the specialised services in European information provided by ADEGUA's Europe Direct Relay.

ADEGUA has the experience as project leader, the team, the access to financial resources, the local business network and the strategic vision, geared towards innovation, to be a valuable territorial partner in research projects. Our area acts as a "living lab" and can therefore serve as a real scale test bed for innovations, new products or services, thus facilitating the participation of individuals and / or companies in those tests. ADEGUA's experience focuses on the areas of bio-economy, renewable energy, social change and social innovation.

Currently, ADEGUA is conducting a strategic repositioning in the context of the new needs because of the difficult economic situation in the European context and specifically in our territorial area of action. In this strategy, to be developed from a comprehensive study of the situation in the area and the needs of the population, the European level plays an important role as it did before, but ADEGUA is looking for a more proactive approach to innovative collaborations and synergies, that through applied research and innovation can generate sustainable long-term responses to those needs. Promoting smart, sustainable and inclusive socio-economic development as proposed by the Europe 2020 strategy, would be the ultimate goal of ADEGUA. To do this, ADEGUA's local basis will be strengthened, enhancing participation and governance within it and in its interaction with the nearest local and regional actors, and existing networks will be expanded, establishing new partnerships in the field of local development and research at European and international level.

This new strategic approach involves the creation of a line of finance for innovation projects within the framework of our goals.

Some of ADEGUA's projects

  • BANIANA I, drafting and technical management for the City of Baena. Years 2007-2011. Amount: 6.6 million euros. Funds: ERDF; Ministry of Land Policy, government of Spain.

  • BANIANA II, drafting for the City of Baena. Year 2011. Amount: 9.2 million euros. Funds: ERDF; Ministry of Land Policy, government of Spain.

  • PRODER, drafting, management and implementation. Years 1996-1999. Amount: 2.5 million euros. Funds: EAGGF-Guidance; Local Administration; Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, government of Andalusia; ERDF.

  • PRODER ANDALUCÍA, drafting, management and implementation. Years 2000-2006. Amount: 6.4 million euros. Funds: EAGGF-Guidance; Local Administration; Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, government of Andalusia; ERDF.

  • LIDER ANDALUCIA , drafting, management and implementation. Years 2007-2013. Amount: 5.3 million euros. Funds: EAFRD; Local Administration; Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, government of Andalusia.

  • EUROPE DIRECT, European information service management. Years from 2005 to the present. Amount: 244,000 euros (2011-2013 period). Funds: European Commission, DG Communication; Regional Ministry of the Presidency, government of Andalusia (European Information Network of Andalusia); Association of Municipalities of the Guadajoz.

  • OLIVE GROWING, A NEW OLIVE CULTURE, drafting, coordination and implementation. Years 2011-2012. Amount: 154,000 euros. Funds: Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Environment, government of Spain.

  • ALTERNATIVE ENERGY : A FUTURE FOR THE RURAL WORLD, drafting, coordination and implementation. Years 2007-2009. Amount: 600,000 euros. Funding: Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, government of Andalusia.

  • PEOPLE IN RISK OF SOCIAL EXCLUSION, drafting, management and implementation. Years 2012-2013. Amount: 42,000 euros. Funds: Cajasur BBK Bank, Welfare Projects.

  • AGRICULTURAL TRAINING, drafting, management and implementation. Years 2011-2013. Amount: 138,000 euros. Funds: EAFRD; Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, government of Andalusia.

  • BUILDING NETWORKS, management and implementation. 2011-2012. Amount: 40,000 euros. Funds: EAFRD; Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, government of Andalusia.


Institutions and organisations that collaborate with ADEGUA

  • European Commission, DG Communication.

  • Representation in Spain of the European Commission and the European Parliament.

  • Ministry of Territorial Policy, Government of Spain.

  • Regional Ministry of Agriculture and Fisheries, Government of Andalusia.

  • Regional Ministry of the Presidency, Government of Andalusia.

  • International Campus of Agrifood Excellence (CEIA3). University of Cordoba, Jaen, Cadiz, Huelva and Almeria.

  • University of Cordoba.

  • University of Jaen.

  • High Council for Scientific Research (CSIC). Institute of Economics , Geography and Demography.

  • Andalusian Institute for Research and Training in Agriculture and Fisheries (IFAPA).

  • Andalusia Confederation of Employers (CEA)- Cordoba Confederation (CECO).

  • Spanish Network for Rural Development (REDR).

  • Rural Network of Andalusia (ARA).

  • Innoves Foundation.

  • Cordoba Provincial Council.

  • Association of Municipalities of the Guadajoz.

  • City of Baena.

  • City of Castro del Rio.

  • City of Nueva Carteya.

  • City of Espejo.

  • City of Valenzuela.

  • Cajasur BBK Bank, Welfare Projects.

  • Regulatory Council of the Denomination of Origin “Baena”.

  • Nuestra Señora de Guadalupe SCA, olive-growing Cooperative.

  • German Baena SCA, olive-growing Cooperative.

  • San Isidro SCA, olive-growing Cooperative.

  • Olive Innovations SL.

  • Baena Agroenergetica SCA, energy Cooperative.


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