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Photo of Maria Andrea Nardi

Maria Andrea Nardi


Photo of Maria Andrea Nardi

Rural development in Latin America. A critical territorial approach


  • Andrea Nardi

Summary, in English

Latin America attends currently to the construction of a paradigm of rural development based on the potentiality of the territory to encourage processes of rural wellbeing. Some international studies relating rural development to territory from an institutional perspective have recently come out, greatly contributing to the construction of a territorially based rural development in the region. The paradigm is mainly centred in a monetary approach, stressing the need to increase incomes at local level through new agricultural or non-agricultural production and/or increases in productivity as well as through education for migrating to urban areas.

Development policies and projects that promote social and institutional transformation have to deal with the confrontation of those who oppose changing the status quo, particularly the local elites, and the resistance of those communities that consider that their identities may be lost as a result of that transformation. Therefore, a critical approach to territory (understood as an arena where different local and non local actors try to realize their projects) should be build up in order to comprehend the process generating rural poverty and development.

The purpose of this paper is to present the main ideas and concepts of an analytical framework under construction that may allow us to understand rural development from a critical territorial approach. The hypothesis is that social mobilization of local actors is a main issue when approaching and promoting development in poor rural regions of Latin American countries, especially the organization of peasants and farmers as they constitute

the majority of the inhabitants and are largely excluded from the socioeconomic and political system.


  • Department of Human Geography

Publishing year




Document type

Conference paper


  • Human Geography


  • rural development
  • Latin America
  • territorial rural development
  • territory
  • power
  • alternative development

Conference name

NGM (Nordic geographers Meeting), 2007

Conference date

2007-06-15 - 2007-06-17

Conference place

Bergen, Norway