New strategies for rural development in the Russian North Semenova Tamara

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New strategies for rural development in the Russian North Semenova Tamara

Rural landscapes in Russia cover a wide and diverse geographic area. The new economic reality established since the late 1990s aggravated the polarity in the urban/rural dichotomy and significantly modified both land use patterns and landscapes. Economic factors force governmental bodies and public authorities to pay special attention to the regions with specific development needs, to be addressed with a cross-cutting approach and to be mainstreamed into the strategic planning. Case studies of rural settlements in the Arkhangelsk region give evidence to these developmental trends. Traditional rural communities in the Russian North suffer from unemployment, depopulation, poverty and anomie. Loss of human capital puts forward the urgent development issues: capacity-building for the civil society and civic participation, self-government and law enforcement, social service and financial support, traditional land use and heritage preservation. Landscape policy becomes both a political and economic issue to be integrated through information exchange and communication into the planning and development process by local communities and their civic organizations.

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