Great work by my friends and colleagues based (mostly) in Germany.
In an increasingly globalized world, rural areas are confronted with enormous development challenges. Agriculture, and in particular smallholder farming, often provides the backbone of rural livelihoods, but the future viability of this sector is threatened by a rising integration of rural areas into the global economy, and thus an increasing exposure of primary product markets to liberalized trade regimes. As a result, rural residents often need to diversify their incomes, specialize, or shift away from traditional farming activities – a set of changes that is closely linked with the notion of rural development. Several models of rural development have been proposed, but they do not always adequately explain why development stagnates in certain regions.
In our new paper we provide a possible explanation for such stagnation, illustrated by a case study from Central Romania. Based on qualitative interviews with over 350 inhabitants from 66 villages, our aim was to understand…
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