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Cluster

Rural Futures

The big development issues of the coming decades, including inequality, sustainability, exclusion and security, all have specific and critically important rural dimensions.

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 environmental shocks and stresses. At the same time, many possible rural futures can be envisaged, which will have major implications for local livelihoods, poverty and social relations, conflict, migration, production and distribution systems, food security, natural resource management and environmental change.

Through our research, policy engagement, teaching and training, the Rural Futures Cluster seeks to support the emergence of pathways that deliver both greater social justice and sustainability for rural people and places, while recognising their important interconnections with urban areas.

We assume 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 and women to take greater control over their productive assets.

Further, we take it as self-evident that the aspirations, agency, voices and assets of rural people must be a central to these dynamic processes at different scales. Thus, a key focus of the Rural Futures Cluster is to understand how local change processes articulate with those at national and global levels.

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

Opinion

What is revolutionary about the Green Revolution?

The dramatic increase in yields of wheat and rice in the 1960s and 1970s in India, along with many other countries in the post-colonial world, was framed as a technological breakthrough made possible by miracle hybrid seed varieties. This breakthrough ostensibly averted mass scale hunger and was...

13 June 2019

Opinion

Reflecting on Bangladesh’s ‘green revolution’

My encounter with Bangladesh’s ‘green revolution’ began in 1986 in eastern Bangladesh where I undertook village level fieldwork for a PhD on agrarian change. The focus was to understand how rural households were interacting with high yielding seeds, mechanised ploughing and irrigation,...

5 June 2019