The Countryside and Community Research Institute (CCRI), is a unique partnership between the University of Gloucestershire, the Royal Agricultural University and Hartpury College. It is the largest specialist rural research centre in the UK, having expertise in all aspects of research in policy and planning for the countryside and the environment of the UK, Europe and further afield.

Our key research interests are manifested in robust and holistic evaluation of rural policy as we build our expertise and expand our research focus in readiness for the significant policy challenges that lie ahead, not only for rural areas but also for urban areas.

Some of CCRI’s recent research has considered the role of cities in the future of agricultural food production and has highlighted changes in the conceptualization of the rural-urban continuum, while through other work we have started to engage with renewable energy and energy policies.  We have also been involved in major research looking at using a natural catchment approach to flood management.

In 2015 we organised a major policy conference based around the themes of  ‘Inclusive Food Systems’, ‘Well-Being, Happiness and Rural Policy’ and ‘Learning and Innovation for Sustainable Farm Businesses’.

Having been part of several successful consortium bids in the EU 7th Framework (FP7) funding programme, our success has continued in the new Horizon 2020 programme, the biggest EU Research and Innovation programme ever with nearly €80 billion of funding available over 7 years. We are currently working on three Horizon 2020 funded projects, which demonstrates that the work of the CCRI is increasingly international. We are working with universities and businesses across Europe to find solutions to the pressing questions of sustainability.

The Mission Statement of the CCRI is:
“The CCRI will guide and influence rural change through rigorous and theoretically sound research of clear policy relevance to the economy, society, environment and governance of the South West region, rural Britain and the rest of Europe emphasising sustainable development, economic regeneration, sustainable environments, local distinctiveness and inclusive processes. It aims to be acknowledged as a centre of excellence in research by academic and practitioner communities and to communicate research findings effectively to public, private and voluntary sectors and all rural stakeholders.”

The CCRI has developed a clear focus of undertaking work funded through research grants and other research contracts. This has been both to provide a solid income base for growth, and to ensure the relevance of its work to its client community. Such funding has required the Institute to work as a commercial organisation operating largely on a self-funded basis although remaining clearly within the higher education sector. This commercial way of working, where the Institute responds directly to client needs, remains the central income source for the Institute. All work undertaken by the Institute is quality assured and considered for its ethical appropriateness by the University Research Ethics Committees.

Some 85% of the CCRI’s research is considered, through peer review, to be of international standing and its annual research income from external contracts is in excess of £700,000. The Institute also boasts a vibrant research student community.

Institute Information
The Countryside and Community Research Institute is a collaboration between the University of Gloucestershire, the Royal Agricultural University and Hartpury College for the purposes of research, education and knowledge exchange. The Institute uses corporate service functions (e.g. financial, legal, etc.) of all of these institutions as applicable to the employment of staff and the institution of the lead researcher for projects.

The University of Gloucestershire is a company limited by guarantee registered in England and Wales. Registered number 06023243.
Registered office: The Park, Cheltenham, GL50 2RH.
VAT number: 886143987

Hartpury College is a Statutory Further Education Corporation and was established by the 1992 Further and Higher Education Act.

The institutions are exempt charities by statute.

All copyright relating to the CCRI name, logo and other identifying features is owned by the University of Gloucestershire.

Customer Focus
The Countryside and Community Research Institute aims to treat all those it is in contact with professionally and courteously, and to carry out its research diligently and effectively.

We will always strive to ensure that effective means of communication are open to our customers, and that customer requests and enquiries are dealt with in a speedy and efficient manner. Where we are unable to provide a full response straight away, we will always acknowledge your enquiry.

We welcome your feedback, whether as a complaint or as a commendation, to find out how you feel about the work we do and will use this information to improve how the Institute works. This helps us to understand your needs and cater for your requirements in the best way possible.

All comments or complaints should be directed to the Institute’s Business Manager at the details given in the contacts section and in the case of complaints, an initial response will be provided within 10 working days.