The Nature Conservation Network (XCN, by its Catalan acronym), as it is known today, is the result of the fusion that took place in February 2019 between the Land Stewardship Network (originally formed in 2003), and the Catalan Environmental Volunteering Network. It is constituted as a second-level non-profit organization, integrating around 150 associations, foundations and city councils in Catalonia, which take care today of approximately 700 stewardship initiatives covering roughly 40.000 hectares of land.
XCN mission is the conservation, preservation and promotion of natural heritage and biodiversity, along with their associated cultural and landscape values, mainly through community engagement, that is, supporting land stewardship organizations and environmental volunteering, but also through the establishment of key partnerships with the local public administration, advocating favourable policies at the national level and networking with environmentalist social movements and grass-roots organizations.
Through a careful documentation and project development effort, but also in close cooperation with regional universities and research centres, and participating as well in national and international working groups and research and advocacy networks, XCN generates and disseminates key information and knowledge to its members and society through seminars, campaigns, training activities and technical assistance projects.
Engagement, professionalism and co-responsibility are the core values which guide daily life of the organization, which employs today 12 people. Out of them, mainly Jofre Rodrigo, Miquel Correa and Clara Blasco are involved in the development of the tasks associated to the RURALIZATION project.
Jofre is currently the executive co-director of XCN, ensuring that the work done under RURALIZATION is aligned with the mission and vision of the organization. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Environmental Studies from the University of Girona, as well as a Master’s Degree in Advanced Studies in Foundations of Economic Analysis from the same university. Prior to XCN, and following his Master’s degree, he focused on environmental consultancy, accumulating significant professional experience to date.
Miquel is the dedicated RURALIZATION project officer at XCN, executing tasks but also coordinating and ensuring proper management and dissemination of the project. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Business Studies and Economics, and a Master’s in International Relations. He is currently undertaking as well the PhD in Economics, touching upon the role of geography, social networks and public policy in the sustainability of farming activity and rural regions, topics closely related to RURALIZATION. Prior to XCN, he accumulated significant experience in project management, development and consultancy around these topics.
Clara is a project officer at XCN, partly dedicated to the RURALIZATION project, mainly to the tasks related to access to land, topic upon which she accumulates significant knowledge and experience from other XCN projects. She holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Microbiology and a Master’s in Natural Protected Areas Management. She is interested in the intersection between rural development and nature conservation, and so has volunteered in different European countries within organic farming and forest management initiatives. Prior to XCN, she worked in the areas of food waste prevention and environmental education.