Publications des agents du Cirad


A new emerging rural world : An overview of rural change in Africa

Losch B. (ed.), Magrin G. (ed.), Imbernon J. (ed.). 2013. Montpellier : CIRAD, 46 p..

The atlas is a tool that is both accessible and indispensable for understanding rural change in Africa. This original tool relates data on demographics, urbanization and resource use with spatial and economic dynamics, both on a continental level and through several regional examples, to provide a novel inventory of rural restructuring in North and sub-Saharan Africa. Using indicators, maps and charts, the atlas reveals the dynamics at play within the rural world in Africa and territorial restructuring on the continent. In particular, it serves as a reminder of how population and urban growth processes and the development of communication links have substantially modified the nature of African rural areas, even if some regions are still isolated. The increased density of links between town and country is the sign of a new type of territoriality that should be recognized and serve as a framework for development policies, which are currently a hostage to their compartmentalized sectoral visions. Agricultural, environmental management health and education, urban development and infrastructure policies need to be restructured within territorial approaches, which are the only ones capable of responding to the challenges faced by the continent: creating jobs for the growing numbers of young people; diversifying economic activity ; rebalancing territories to prevent excessive growth of capital cities; preserving natural resources. The aim of the atlas is to fuel the debate about the main regional and continental development issues. It provides a reference situation for future work that could serve to fine-tune analyses on a regional and thematic level and identify the main changes. It will be supplemented and updated regularly. It is published jointly by CIRAD and NEPAD (New Partnership for Africa's Development, a technical body of the African Union), with financial support from the AFD, and fits in with NEPAD's Rural Futures programme. The programme plans to support territorial dynamics and structural change for sustainable development of the continent.

Mots-clés : politique de développement; développement régional; développement économique; développement rural; croissance de la population; distribution des populations; transition démographique; démographie; gouvernance; urbanisation; gestion des ressources naturelles; ressource foncière; ressource en eau; forêt tropicale humide; commerce international; alimentation; agriculture; cartographie; zone urbaine; zone rurale; afrique; développement territorial; politique publique

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