Community House Bargauani

In the 4th term of the first year in the course International Development Management students face the module “Innovation for Development”. Usually they would explore a rural village, during a fieldtrip to Romania and come up with an appropriate innovation to improve the livelihoods of the people in the village.

Unfortunately, this year the organizers of the fieldtrip had to adapt due to the current corona crisis which made the fieldtrip, as it was planned, impossible. Therefore, the students had to gain all information through online interviews with people who are connected to Romania. The interviewees tried to give the students deeper insights into the lives in the villages.

The area, the students focused their research on is a small village located in the region Neamt county called Birgauani. Birgauani can be found in the north-east of Romania. It counts around 3500 inhabitants.

Like a lot of other rural areas in Romania the village is facing a rapid emigration over the last years. Young people are moving into the cities to find a job and have a more diversified lifestyle. This movement is the main research problem that the students should solve with an appropriate innovation that motivates the villagers and especially young people to stay in the village.

Why a community house in Birgauani?

Our Innovation for Birgauani is a Community house in which people can come together, share knowledge as well as issues, learn more about sustainable gardening techniques, trade goods and be creative. The facility will be closely connected to the church to combine religion and the members of the community. Further knowledge will be shared by Carmen Todita and Eelke Wiersma, two gardening specialists and artists. This shall create closer bonds between the villagers and give them a feeling of belonging to a community.


About the team

The community house team includes Hedwig Bartels, Sarah Bouwense, Leah Menting, Sabine Weber and Dorinde Wilbrink. We are part of the first year in International Development Management studies and worked together on the research in Birgauani.

Together we came up with the innovation of a community house for the villagers to improve the connection and create a space for communal activities.