Sollstedt is located in a rural area in the north of Thuringia, formerly part of the German Democratic Republic. Since the German reunification, Sollstedt has been heavily impacted by economic and demographic change. This has included the collapse of salt (‘Kali’) mining, job losses, outmigration, and population ageing. In addition, important institutions of social life had to be closed and building vacancies and investment backlog have arisen. All these disadvantages have impaired the development of Sollstedt.
Keeping Sollstedt independent is the main vision for the village and the strategy should be to become smart and digital by 2030.
The Covid-19 pandemic in 2020 proved the advantages of living in the countryside over living in an over-populated city. This can be especially true for families with parents aged 30 to 50, wishing for tranquillity. The village can offer such opportunities in the form of properties with gardens, for example, but these need to be further enhanced with technical and digital capacities.
Transforming Sollstedt into a smart village could prove an enabling factor to provide the right work-life balance that this age group is looking for.
Village strategy :
Smart Rural Journey
Follow along with our Village Roadmap here :
The smart action has aimed at contributing to the establishment of a local telemedicine network. Sollstedt has sought expert support to prepare concrete steps for setting up a local telemedicine network. By means of telemedicine services, local doctors should be enabled to provide health care through a digital channel. Generally, the preconditions for establishing telemedicine are favourable in Germany since a number of regulatory decisions have been taken by the government and the health insurers to facilitate the setting up of telemedicine schemes, also in response to declining numbers of general practitioner practices in rural areas.
Step 1/4 : Initial scoping paper
empirica provided the village with a methodology for the co-development of suitable telemedicine services together with relevant local stakeholders, augmented by a first scoping paper (google translated English version) outlining what types of telemedicine services are today available that could principally be harnessed for setting up the envisaged telemedicine network
Step 2/4 : Ambition focusing
A guidance document (google translated version in English) was developed for consolidating the initial vision with all relevant stakeholders in a structured manner. It identifies a range of guiding questions for further consolidating the initial ideas about the telemedicine network to be established.
Step 3/4 : Generic model of telemedicine network
A generic model (google translated English version) for the local telemedicine network identifies key players and their interaction by means of a typical health service delivery pathway. It includes an analysis of available service funding opportunities available within the national health care system
Step 4/4 : Outlook
As a next step, an operational plan needs to be agreed by the relevant stakeholders setting out how the envisaged telemedicine service model is to be put into practice. Such an implementation plan should assign clear responsibilities and include a timetable that clearly shows which stakeholder must do what and by when.