Integrated rural development - do we need a new approach?
Rural development was traditionally associated with agriculture. The policy shift towards integrated rural development reflects the complex linkages and interactions within the system of overall rural development. Putting too much emphasis on agriculture and ignoring its linkages to the rest of the economy could result in analytical bias. Rural development provides an alternative to agriculture as a source of incomes and livelihoods. Rural diversification is a process aimed at reducing the price risks of agricultural production and is a logical consequence of the policy shift away from direct agricultural price support. This shift represents a fundamental change in policy objectives and frameworks towards a more holistic approach to rurality and implies new tools of analysis. Conventional economic models are based on an instrumentalist methodology which links means to ends with little interest in the underlying structure. We argue here for a synergy approach to rural development. This approach incorporates both traditional network and institutional analysis and focuses on working mechanisms and processes rather than ends. Substituting a holistic vision of rurality for the old instumentalist and deterministic approach leads to understanding the need for fostering co-operation between public and private actors to achieve sustainable development.
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- Woolcock, Michael & Narayan, Deepa, 2000. "Social Capital: Implications for Development Theory, Research, and Policy," World Bank Research Observer, World Bank Group, vol. 15(2), pages 225-249, August.
- Philip Kostov & John Lingard, 2004. "Rural Development as Risk Management," Others 0409013, EconWPA.
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