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C@R project is an Integrated Project, funded by the IST programme of the European Commission's 6th Framework with a budget of EUR 15 million and 33 project partners.It started on September 11th, 2006 and will run 36 months.

C@R aims to boost the introduction of Collaborative Working Environments (CWE) as key enablers catalyzing rural development. According to this strategic goal, the C@R Integrated Project proposes a complete set of research activities and tasks which will identify, develop and validate technological responses to actual barriers jeopardizing the sustainable development in rural areas.

To achieve this priority objective, C@R will advance on the specification, development, test and validation of a powerful and flexible worker-centric collaborative platform that will significantly enhance the capabilities of rural inhabitants, both, @work and @life, thus leading to a better quality of life and a revalorisation of rural settings.

From the technical standpoint, C@R will organise the work in three layers:

  • Rural Living Labs - RLL (layer 3),
  • Software Collaborative Tools - SCT (layer 2) and 
  • Collaborative Core Services - CCS (layer 1).

Layer 1 will encapsulate all core services and resources (networks, sensors, devices, software modules, localization sources, etc.) in reusable software components.

A key piece of the C@R framework is the upper-layer service architecture, or the C@RA, which combines in a synergic manner the layer 1 components according to orchestration high level capabilities resulting in a set of high level software tools, as part of layer 2. The C@RA will be highly customizable in the sense of providing mechanisms to incorporate any proprietary or open solutions, and any standard. This approach will permit C@R to substantially contribute to the definition of a user-centric Open Collaborative Architecture (OCA).

C@R layer 3 will articulate Rural Living Labs as innovative research instruments involving rural users. The RLL user-oriented methodology will guarantee to meet the highly specific rural users’ expectations and will provide mechanisms to gather technical requirements for the C@RA. Several innovative scenarios with an expected high impact on rural development have been selected to enable a later validation of the C@RA.

C@R will deepen on the evaluation of collaborative technologies in the rural economic and social backbones proposing a structured methodology to assess the impact of the technologies developed on the indicators of rural developments and supporting policy responses at national, European, and global levels.

C@R will influence with high profile to the policy, dissemination and exploitation dimensions in rural development by means of the organization of networked activities, task forces, dissemination events, trainings, etc.


C@R Collaboration at Rural