RURASMUS is an initiative for a European "on-the-land-semester"

as a supplement to the established ERASMUS semester abroad.

In doing so, young people develop a new perspective on rural Europe. Municipalities cooperate with universities and technical colleges

and thereby become educational institutions.

Rural areas are undergoing major structural changes in many parts of Europe. These result in a migration - in particular of the young population - into urban conurbations. Studies show that already more than 50% of people live in cities, a figure that will continue to increase.


The successful ERASMUS program brings young students to another country for half a year or even a year, usually to a university in a city.

The RURASMUS program is to be launched as a supplement. In doing so, young people should study for six or twelve months in a rural location, in a community, small town or region. These places become temporary university locations. The challenges of the locality become the study assignment for students of different fields of study. Depending on the topic and the resources of the universities and communities, it is possible to complete RURASMUS projects alone or together with other students.


The initiative aims to give young people new, enjoyable access to rural space, breaking down prejudice, building trust and providing the opportunity to actively shape the future.

RURASMUS is to be established as a Europe-wide university program and will be further developed for apprentices in a next project phase in order to counteract the shortage of skilled workers in rural areas.


RURASMUS – Young people. Go rural!

is an initiative of Roland Gruber and Elisabeth Leitner


Die beiden Initiatoren Roland Gruber und Elisabeth Leitner haben sowohl privat als auch beruflich eine starke Affinität zum Thema Land. The increasingly intense discussions surrounding the future of rural areas and the rural exodus of the young population have motivated the two initiators to take the idea of an “on-the-land-semester” from a lecture by Prof. Mario Tvrtkovic’s to an European level and and develop the RURASMUS program.