Rural Geography

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingEntry for encyclopedia/dictionary

2 Citations (Scopus)


Rural geography may be simply defined as the study of people, places, and landscapes in rural areas, and of the social and economic processes that shape these geographies. However, as the definition of “rural” has become increasingly difficult and contested, so the boundaries of “rural geography” have been tested. Rural geography today is hence a diverse and dynamic subdiscipline. Traditional areas of study, including agricultural geography, resource management and conservation, landuse and planning, population and migration, economic development, settlement patterns, rural infrastructure, and recreation and tourism, have been joined by newer concerns such as poverty and social welfare, governance and politics, rural culture and media representations, and the “neglected rural geographies” of “othered” groups. The progression of rural geography has been shaped by theoretical influences, from political economy, poststructuralism and the “cultural turn” in human geography, and relational theory, as well as by responses to shifting empirical contexts. Conventionally, the practice, prominence, and focus of rural geography have varied between countries, with research often focused on national topics. Recently, however, rural geography has become more global in scope, with greater exchange and collaboration between rural geographers in different parts of the world, and a greater emphasis on transnational connections and the impacts of globalization.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationInternational Encyclopedia of Human Geography
EditorsAudrey Kobayashi
Number of pages11
ISBN (Electronic)9780081022962
ISBN (Print)9780081022955
Publication statusPublished - 04 Dec 2019


  • Agricultural geography
  • Agriculture
  • Cultural turn
  • Globalization
  • Land use
  • Migration
  • Political economy approach
  • Post-rural
  • Rural
  • Rural geography
  • Rural resources
  • Rural settlement
  • Rural sociology


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