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  • conomie ruraleNumro 307 (Novembre-dcembre 2008)Nouvelles frontires entre les politiques rurales en Europe

    ...............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................

    Ian Hodge et Peter Midmore

    Models of Rural Development andApproaches To Analysis Evaluation AndDecision-Making...............................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................................

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    Rfrence lectroniqueIan Hodgeet Peter Midmore, Models of Rural Development and Approaches To Analysis Evaluation And Decision-Making, conomie rurale [En ligne],307|Novembre-dcembre 2008, mis en ligne le 01 septembre 2010. URL :http://economierurale.revues.org/index406.htmlDOI : en cours d'attribution

    diteur : Socit Franaise d'conomie ruralehttp://economierurale.revues.orghttp://www.revues.org

    Document accessible en ligne l'adresse suivante : http://economierurale.revues.org/index406.htmlCe document est le fac-simil de l'dition papier. Tous droits rservs

  • CONOMIE RURALE 307/SEPTEMBRE-OCTOBRE 2008 23

    Introduction

    The recent increase in emphasis on evi-dence-based policy must be applaudedfrom a number of perspectives. It is goodfrom a social point of view because pol-icy-making ought to be more preciselydeveloped and targeted as a result of takingresearch findings into account; likewise, foracademic and other researchers, more atten-tion to their efforts to understand the mech-anisms and impact of policy interventionprovides an incentive to focus on immedi-ate and relevant questions. However, in thespecific case of rural development there aresome fundamental barriers to analysis andevaluation of policy which need to beresolved. The most important of these stemsfrom the fact that rural development, whileit might reasonably in the past have beenviewed in terms of sectoral policy, hasshifted to a territorial policy, or arguably,further towards a local policy. Long-standing controversies exist regarding thenature, scope and definition of rural territoryitself. Different designations provide arbi-trarily different results, and those which arebased on some kind of threshold such as thatprovided by the OECD (less than 150 per-sons per square kilometre) conceal whatmost commentators agree is a diverse rangeof socio-economic conditions (Hodge andMonk, 2004; Yarwood, 2005).

    In England, the re-organisation of minis-terial responsibility following on from thefoot-and-mouth disease outbreak resultedin a Department of Environment, Food andRural Affairs (Defra), at least part of whichhas a remit based on an uncertain geography:

    consequently, it sought an entirely new def-inition, based on an underlying settlementclassification built up from the location ofindividual households, in an attempt touncover the needs of rural areas and com-munities (Defra, 2004a)1. In England also(although not in the other constituent partsof the United Kingdom), levels of populationdensity and urbanisation differ significantlyin relation to the European norm, so that theclassically assumed general equationbetween rurality and disadvantage is notvalid. There are certainly some specific andintractable pockets of poverty and thesocially mixed character of communities, butthese are hard to identify (Cloke et al.,1994). In the United Kingdom, responsi-bility for rural policy and rural develop-ment has been complicated by the process ofpolitical devolution to constituent countries.The Westminster Government, representedby Defra (and previously one of its prede-cessors, the Ministry of Agriculture, Fish-eries and Food), has overall responsibility ona European and international level, but interritorial terms covers only England. Else-where, the devolved administrations carryout the policy function and there is anincreasing involvement at the regional level(Ward et al., 2003).

    A further impediment to evaluation iscaused by confusion over terminology. Sincethe Agenda 2000 reforms, most of the Euro-pean Unions non-commodity EuropeanAgricultural Guarantee and Guidance Fund(EAGGF) spending has been consolidatedinto programmes delivered under the Rural

    Models of Rural Development and ApproachesTo Analysis Evaluation And Decision-MakingIan HODGE and Peter MIDMORE Department of Land Economy, University of Cambridgeand School of Management and Business, Aberystwyth University

    1. Cf. Page 5.

    307 COMPLET 7/11/08 9:18 Page 23

  • conditions in rural areas, the ways in whichthese conditions have been conceptualisedinto rural development theories, the politi-cal influence of different interest groups,and the policy approaches that have beenimplemented in practice. There is no clearlinear causality amongst these factors; ratherwe see interactions amongst them in a simul-taneous process of development. In practice,this has been an evolutionary process, morea continuum than a set of discrete changes.However, we argue that these four modelsdo capture the characteristics of this moregradual change.

    The paper4 relates these changing anddeveloping contexts of rural developmentbased on the experience within the UnitedKingdom to the implications for policy eval-uation, using specific examples that showhow the development of guidelines by boththe United Kingdom Government (HMTreasury, 2003) and the European Com-mission (CEC, 1999) have contributed tomaking this a mechanical, path-dependentactivity. It concludes by suggesting thatalthough measurement of impacts on ruraleconomies, environments and communitiesis a necessary component of overall evalu-ations, without more discursive and quali-tative inquiry, it is not, alone, sufficient.This in turn has implications for the ways inwhich rural development decisions are madein practice. Given the relatively early expe-rience of these trends within the UnitedKingdom following an early industrialisationand rural transformation (Grigg, 1982), theremay be implications for the ways in whichrural development is practised in other Euro-pean countries as their rural areas passthrough similar stages of development.

    Development Regulation (RDR)2. Cursoryexamination reveals that the accompany-ing measures of MacSharrys CommonAgricultural Policy (CAP) reform, consol-idated into the Second Pillar, are nar-rowly focused on farming and its environ-mental impact. Bryden (2000)3 has shownthat less than 10% of planned expendituresunder the 2000-06 RDR programmes wereon Article 33 measures focused on activ-ities outside the agricultural sector, and con-sequently a negligible fraction of overallEAGGF payments. While there are someevident indirect linkages between agricultureand the non-farm rural economy, it is diffi-cult to disentangle the various strands ofEAGGF support, other Structural Fundsactivity, experimental LEADER fundingand national programmes for rural actionwhen attempting to link outcomes to activ-ities. There is little evidence of radicalchange under the current Rural Develop-ment Regulation (Dwyer et al., 2007).

    These are the challenges which the papersets out to explore. The United Kingdomexperienced a relatively early period ofindustrialisation and urbanisation in the 19th

    century compared with other Europeancountries and a consequent transformationof rural economies. More recently, in the 20th

    century, there has been a period of signifi-cant counterurbanisation (Robert and Ran-dolph, 1983; Champion, 1994) when popu-lations have increased even in relativelyremote rural areas. We set out a series offour models of rural development that seekto chart the changes in the predominantapproaches to rural development over time.While they differ in their focus and spatialcoverage, we argue that they represent dom-inant characterisations and policyapproaches at particular points in time, andimply different types of analysis and scalesof policy implementation. The models areinfluenced by changing economic and social

    24 CONOMIE RURALE 307/SEPTEMBRE-OCTOBRE 2008

    Models of rural development and approaches to analysis

    2. EC1257/1999.3. Cf. page 10.

    4. An earlier version of this paper was presented atthe joint Socit Franaise dconomie Rurale andAgricultural Economics Society Conference onRural Development, Paris, 29 March 2006. Theauthors are grateful for the helpful comments madeby the referees.

    307 COMPLET 7/11/08 9:18 Page 24

  • may still be on farming, but there is encour-agement for agricultural diversifi