Smart Rural Network Society: a community-based portal


  • Lack of services


  • Interactive digital platform; open source
  • Digital package of health and welfare services


  • Politics and history, culture and habits (commitment of inhabitants, organisations and stakeholders)
  • Process guidance


  • Implementation document community based portal  
  • Source code webbased community portal

Problems and challenges  

Burum 1

Due to scaling, aging of the population, and the effects of shrinkage, villages in rural areas in are facing a serious decrease and decline of the level of services and facilities/amenities. This has a negative impact

on the liveability and the attractiveness of these villages. The goal of this project was to develop a concept that will bring back services and facilities/ amenities to the village of Burum in Northeast Fryslân, in a digital way. Because a townhouse

as a social hot spot is important for a liveable and sustainable  community, the challenge was to make new (digital) functions accessible from home as well from to the townhouse.


There is an interactive digital platform developed with a digital package of health and welfare services. These are accessible from the townhouse (virtual counter) and also accessible from home. These services are designed to strengthen the social cohesion.When logged in at the portal, the inhabitants of Burum can:

  • arrange mutual aid through
  • enter a "safe" local social community and share information, news and photos with each other
  • can subscribe to make a trip with the “Plusbus”;  a bus run by volunteers, that can bring elderly to a supermarket or another destination (recreational trip)
  • find information about associations, sports clubs in the village
  • make a videoconference with an employee of the municipality or the home care organization
  • exchange books with each other (this is still in development)

BarriersBurum 2

Essential to implementation is:  commitment of the inhabitants and organisations in the village and other relevant stakeholders in order to adapt it to local needs. Therefore investment in process guidance is a boundary condition to make it successful.


- Project plan(s) - The portal is available as it is developed in open source standards and is available for free; adaptation of the portal to another village requires own investment (layout, own url, private server, SSL certificate)