cover image: World Social Report 2021: Reconsidering Rural Development


World Social Report 2021: Reconsidering Rural Development

11 Mar 2021

This report was published by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs (UN DESA) in May 2021. It is the second edition of the World Social Report series – UN DESA’s annual flagship publication discussing "major social development issues" across the world. The 2021 edition analyses existing strategies for rural development and highlights how they have been impacted by the Covid-19 pandemic.It notes that income alone is not a sufficient measure of rural development. The report advocates for the study of the "environmental dimension" of rural development – the effects of economic activities on the natural environment. It also recommends strategies and policy actions for sustainable development of rural areas.The report states that rural areas play an important role in determining the ecology and environmental conditions of both developing and developed countries. In low-income and lower-middle-income countries, the rural population comprises about 67 and 60 per cent respectively of the total population. In high-income countries, on the other hand, the population residing in rural areas comprises about one-fifth of the total population. This reveals how development of rural areas is essential for reducing structural inequalities across the globe and protecting the health of the planet.This 174-page report is divided into five chapters: Introduction (Chapter I); Rural development for inclusive growth and a balanced settlement of the population (Chapter II); Poverty, inequality and rural development (Chapter III); Rural development within planetary boundaries (Chapter IV); and Policy recommendations (Chapter V).
environment ecology agricultural-sector health-infrastructure rural-healthcare rural-development rural-infrastructure


United Nations Department Of Economic And Social Affairs

Published in
United Nations



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