EU Rural Development Policies: Present and Future

  • Petra BerkhoutEmail author
  • Kaley Hart
  • Tuomas Kuhmonen
Part of the Palgrave Advances in Bioeconomy: Economics and Policies book series (PABEP)


This chapter considers the evolution of policy for rural areas within the European Union since the 1950s. It does so largely within the context of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) but gives some consideration to the wider EU regional (including cohesion) policies as these have helped shape rural development policy under the CAP. National policies for rural development are not taken into account. The chapter starts by describing the characteristics of rural areas. Next it gives an overview of policy-making for rural areas from the late 1950s to 2000. The third section describes rural development policy/programming since 1999/2000 to date. The chapter concludes with discussion and conclusions on current policy for rural development and the EC proposals for changes from 2021 onwards.


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Copyright information

© The Author(s) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.International Policy Unit, Wageningen Economic ResearchThe HagueThe Netherlands
  2. 2.Institute for European Environmental Policy (IEEP)LondonUK
  3. 3.Finland Futures Research CentreUniversity of TurkuTurkuFinland

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