Key Factors in Rural Development of Iran from a Demographic Perspective


This study is an attempt to show that despite common perception, rural development is an interwoven concept, affected by many factors. Some of these factors such as "population" have been ignored completely or got less attention. Population had not an important role in early socioeconomic development plans of Iran and reference to rural population and its characteristics was only a lip service; such that due to the lack of an inclusive definition of the concept, there was a difference of 16000 in the number of villages in different censuses. Considering that rural development is a place-oriented program and its ultimate objective is to promote the living standards of rural population, it is inevitable to not only look at rural habitats but also consider the characteristics of rural inhabitants, their needs and requirements. In some provinces more than 80 percent of villages are densely populated which leads to not being included in development programs and consequent depopulation of rural areas and rural outmigration. This paper is attempting to show the role of demographic characteristics and necessity of serious attention to them as a key factor in rural development with a consequent change in attitudes and more efficient actions.