Subject and purpose of work: The article presents the concept of smart villages formulated in EU documents. Its purpose is to characterize the concept of smart villages - its assumptions, possibilities and implementation limitations. Materials and methods: Literature studies and the analysis of documents. Results: A comparative analysis of the smart villages and smart city concept was performed. The theoretical foundations and the determinants of its implementation were discussed. Conclusions: The concept of smart villages provides an answer to the search for ways of implementing the concept of sustainable development. The concept is in the initial phase of its formulation and application. It is intended to strengthen the territorial capital of the countryside, while social and technological innovations are a tool for its implementation. Among the barriers to implementing this concept the following ones have to be mentioned: low openness of the rural community to change, low innovation capacity and low level of social capital, low capacity of the local markets, spatial distance, poorly developed transport and communication network.