Policies and institutions

removing barriers to rural-urban exchange

James L. Garrett
issue brief addendum -- beyond rural urban: keeping up with changing realities

Urbanization, trade liberalization, agroindustrialization, and the rise of supermarkets are among the trends providing farmers in poor countries with new opportunities to participate in local and global markets. For farmers to benefit from these changes, however, they must have the resources, skills, and information needed to access and participate in these markets. In addition, rural, urban, and export markets must themselves be integrated. But anachronistic policy mindsets, and unwise policies and investment decisions, can divide rural from urban, break economic, political, and livelihood synergies apart, and leave rural areas behind. Recent research highlights the policies and institutions needed to remove barriers to rural and urban exchange.