Rural Development in the Digital Age: Exploring Neo-Productivist EU Rural Policy, 1st Edition (Hardback) book cover

Rural Development in the Digital Age

Exploring Neo-Productivist EU Rural Policy, 1st Edition

By Martin Pělucha, Edward Kasabov


256 pages | 21 B/W Illus.

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Hardback: 9780367356583
pub: 2019-11-13
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Rural Development in the Digital Age explores current theoretical and policy developments in EU rural policy during the 4.0 period. The book offers an analysis of the contradictory and complex drivers and multiple impacts of Period 4.0 policy within the specific territorial context of its implementation. It is commonly agreed within academic and policy circles that the contexts, trends, drivers and impacts which are currently morphing have the potential to determine the nature and boundaries of rural areas in the longer-term.

The authors examine inconsistencies in the design and implementation of EU rural development policy driven largely by intensifying neo-productivist pressures. The importance and novelty of the book lie in defining and critically examining the territorial impacts of neo-productivism as an ideology, a practice and a set of policy imperatives during the EU’s 2014-2020 programming period. The authors argue that such a paradigm shift in EU rural policy may reduce its effectiveness and ability to meet its goals of balanced territorial development and cohesion.

This book will be of interest to advanced students, researchers and policymakers in rural policy, regional studies, economic geography and EU policy.

Table of Contents

Contents Table of contents * Part I: Introduction * Part II: Rural studies in Period 4.0 – theoretical departures * 2. Defining rural areas: a never-ending exercise? * 3. Analysis of Period 4.0 factors in the context of theoretical approaches to rural studies * 4. Paradigms of rural, farm and agricultural diversification * 5. The policy context - Development paradigm of or stabilisation of rural areas? * 6. Partial conclusion * Part III: Territorial drivers of Rural Development 4.0 * 7. Digital rural regions – infrastructure and agenda * 8. Public services in the countryside - context, problems and relevant policy-making * 9. The role of human resources in Period 4.0 – challenges of rural labour markets, education and training, and territorial specifics of EU countries * 10. Territorial urban-rural links - new trends and drivers of regional development * 11. Partial conclusion * Part IV: The Neo-productivist paradigm of Rural Development Policy – challenges ahead * 12. Rural Studies and Rural Development Policy: A Complex, Charged and Contradictory Nexus * 13. Neo-productivism in the EU’s rural development policy-making * 14. Coherence and mismatch of Neo-productivist Rural Policy and Countryside 4.0 * 15. Methodological context of rural development policy assessment * 16. Partial conclusion * Part V: Conclusions * Appendix I: About the Author/Editor *

About the Authors

Martin Pelucha is Professor of Regional Science at the University of Economics, Prague, Czech Republic.

Prof. Edward Kasabov, Professor in Marketing, Tallinna Tehnikaülikool (Tallinn University of Technology - TalTech).

About the Series

Regions and Cities

In today’s globalised, knowledge-driven and networked world, regions and cities have assumed heightened significance as the interconnected nodes of economic, social and cultural production, and as sites of new modes of economic governance and policy experimentation. This book series brings together incisive and critically engaged international and interdisciplinary research on this resurgence of regions and cities, and should be of interest to geographers, economists, sociologists, political scientists and cultural scholars, as well as to policy-makers involved in regional and urban development.

If you would like to discuss a potential new book for the series, please contact:

Joan Fitzgerald – – Series Editor-in-Chief, or

Natalie Tomlinson – – Routledge Commissioning Editor

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Subject Categories

BISAC Subject Codes/Headings:
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Development / Economic Development
BUSINESS & ECONOMICS / Economics / General
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Human Geography
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Sociology / Rural
SOCIAL SCIENCE / Regional Studies