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Rural Sociology Group

Universiteit van Wageningen - Rural Sociology Group

The Rural Sociology Group of Wageningen University studies the dynamics of rural and regional development processes in Europe. Specific attention is paid to the different levels at which transformation processes occur and are shaped, as well as to the different actors and institutions involved. The Rural Sociology Group studies and analyses these transformation processes from an interpretative-explanatory sociological perspective, combining qualitative and quantitative research methods. A common denominator is the focus on diversity, agency, micro-macro linkages and processes of institutionalisation. Characteristic is the comparative and empirically driven research approach. An important feature of its research is the multidisciplinary approach, based on a well-established co-operation between sociologists, economists, spatial planners, agronomists, animal scientists and technicians. Equally relevant is the close collaboration with (organisations of) stakeholders.

PhD research and training is mainly carried out in programs, which are endorsed by the Mansholt Graduate School of Social Sciences. Rural Sociology also provides an important input into the BSc and MSc programmes on International Development Studies and on Public Health & Society.

Visit also the weblog: Rural Socology Group Wageningen Weblog


Jan Douwe van der Ploeg
Formerly Professor and Chair of Rural Sociology and Emeritus professor of Transition Studies at Wageningen University (WUR), the Netherlands and Adjunct Professor of Rural Sociology at the College of Humanities and Development Studies (COHD) of China Agricultural University (CAU) in Beijing, China.

e-mail: clic here