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Cluster

Rural Futures

Through our research, policy engagement, teaching and training, the Rural Futures cluster supports the emergence of development pathways that deliver both greater social justice and sustainability for rural people and places, while recognising their important interconnections with urban areas and the links between local change processes and those at national and global levels.

Rural societies, economies and areas face challenges and opportunities that can be qualitatively different from their urban analogues, including limited access to infrastructure, services and political decision-making and greater exposure to some kinds of environmental shocks and stresses.

Many possible rural futures can be envisaged, each carrying implications for local livelihoods, poverty and social relations, conflict, migration, production and distribution systems, food security, natural resource management and environmental change.

We believe that improvements in social justice and sustainability can be achieved by opening up a diversity of economic, environmental and technological pathways, practices, models and institutional arrangements that create new democratic spaces, strengthen social movements, enhance innovation and empower rural men, women and young people to take greater control over their productive assets.

The aspirations, agency, voices and assets of rural people must be central to these dynamic processes. The empowerment of people in rural areas who are poor and vulnerable are central to our concerns.

People

Image of Amber Huff
Amber Huff

Research Fellow

Image of Carolina Szyp
Carolina Szyp

Research Officer

Image of Dirk Willenbockel
Dirk Willenbockel

Research Fellow

Image of Dominic Glover
Dominic Glover

Research Fellow

Image of Elise Wach
Elise Wach

Research Advisor

Image of Gabriele Köhler
Gabriele Köhler

Honorary Associate

Projects

Project

Pathway to Sustainable Development and Human Dignity and Choice

The PKSF is implementing the ENRICH through 116 POs in 200 unions of 164 upazilas under 64 districts. The prime objective of this programme is to ensure overall development for all those living in its working areas. To ensure total development, it undertakes initiatives related to human dignity...

Project

Pathways to Stronger Futures in Haiti

It is widely understood that poverty undermines early childhood development (ECD). In turn, poor ECD reinforces intergenerational transmission of poverty. Economic strengthening through comprehensive social protection may offer a 'double boon': it can improve ECD in the short-term and reduce...

Recent work

News

DFID funds programme on Children’s Harmful Work in African Agriculture

The majority of children’s work in Africa is within the agricultural sector. However, there is insufficient evidence on the prevalence of harmful children’s work across different agricultural value chains, farming systems and agro-ecologies. Furthermore, little is understood about the...

16 October 2019

Press release

Action on children’s harmful work in African Agriculture

Identifying and reducing children’s harmful work in African agriculture is the aim of a new project led by the Institute of Development Studies and partners, announced today.  Awarded £8.3million over seven years, the research programme will initially focus on children and their families...

16 October 2019