Series of Papers on Rural-Urban Linkages

The context for this investigation is the importance for SACN of developing an improved understanding of urban-rural interdependencies or linkages and of their implications for policy development and the development of strategic frameworks. Ndabeni (2013: 1) argues rural-urban linkages can be defined broadly as “the structural, social, economic, cultural, and political relationships maintained between individuals and groups in the urban environment and those in rural areas”. Rural-urban linkages involve both spatial and sectoral flows which occur between urban and rural environments. The former refers to, for example, flows of people, goods, money or information whereas the latter would incorporate agricultural goods moving from rural to urban areas or manufactured goods in the other direction (Ndabeni, 2013).


The core aim of this project is to highlight and unpack the complexities in the relationships between the urban and the rural through undertaking an investigation of rural-urban linkages through the lens of one particular economic sector. More specifically, the central goal in this project is to undertake an economic analysis to deepen understanding of how the rural and urban interact and how such interactions might offer important policy or planning implications.