This study discusses the collaborative process between schools and local communities through a case study of the “Toyama-go ESD Promotion Project” in Iida City, Nagano Prefecture. In this project, schools facing the consolidation crisis implemented curriculum restructuring that aligned with sustainable development goals (SDGs). Through this initiative, the schools actively engaged with the local community and schools outside of the region. Consequently, community residents undertook independent activities to revitalize the community, advocated for inward migration and settlement policies, started new businesses leveraging the local environment, and initiated courses to relearn the community's history. These transformations were achieved through collaborative efforts between the schools and the community residents based around the community centers, but with lateral support from government agencies and research institutions also playing an essential role.
It is hope that this project will be referred to as a model for advanced Education for Sustainable Development (ESD) initiatives, and promoting local sustainability through collaborative endeavors between schools and communities in mid-mountainous regions.