A transformation of rural area, productive sectors and societies that is inclusive, dynamic and sustainable is needed. To promote this needs a development model that empowers rural people to play their economic, social and environmental roles to the full.
What is clear today is that rural, the rural transformation, and rural development are no longer synonymous with agriculture, agricultural modernisation, or agricultural development.
The distinction becomes greater as countries develop. The 2008 World Development Report, titled Agriculture for Development (World Bank 2007), placed developing countries in three categories based on the share of agriculture in the national economy and of rural poverty in total poverty: “agriculture-based,” “transforming,” and “urbanised.”
According to this classification, only 14 per cent of the world’s rural population live in agriculture-based countries such as Rwanda.
While 77 per cent are in transforming countries such as India. Nine per cent are in urbanised developing countries like Brazil.
The rural area needs to play a central role in creating more sustainable and inclusive economies and societies.
As the world becomes more urban, rural area has to transform to expand the efficient and sustainable supply of a wide range of goods and services.
Promoting rural empowerment is also a smart strategy to boost inclusive growth.
It is important to build the capacity of rural people to drive change in key areas of sustainable development such as natural resource management and agricultural productivity.
Rural people are vulnerable to shocks that push them into poverty, keep them poor or prevent them from moving out of poverty.
They may not seize new opportunities linked to urbanisation and to a growing demand for rural goods and services.
Many risks are also interlinked and reinforce each other, such as environmental risks and price volatility.
Understanding risks and shocks that affect poor rural households is a need for policies and investments to enable them fully take part in rural transformation.
Developing and enforcing these strategies needs collaboration among public and private actors at all levels.
Rural people’s own institutions play important role, and their own institutional resilience also needs support.
The rural transformation is in essence, a process by which the sharp economic, social, and cultural differences between rural and urban gradually blur and bleed into each other along a continual rise.
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