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Sustainability 2017, 9(7), 1173; doi:10.3390/su9071173

Towards Rural Sustainable Development? Contributions of the EAFRD 2007–2013 in Low Demographic Density Territories: The Case of Extremadura (SW Spain)

Department of Art and Territorial Sciences, Cáceres 10071, Spain
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Received: 12 May 2017 / Revised: 27 June 2017 / Accepted: 28 June 2017 / Published: 5 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Sustainable Urban and Rural Development)
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Abstract

The European Commission has been striving to achieve sustainable development in its rural areas for more than 25 years through funds aimed at modernizing the agricultural and forestry sectors, protecting the environment and improving the quality of life. However, is sustainable rural development really being accomplished? This study sets out to answer this question in the case of Extremadura, a Spanish territory with low demographic density and a gross domestic product still below 75% of the European average. Both qualitative and quantitative methodologies have been employed, using principal component analysis, the result of which has provided us with a model that shows how various behaviors coexist in the region in view of the distribution of current funding from the EAFRD (European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development). The most dynamic areas have received the largest amounts of funding and these are linked to the agricultural sector and to the protection of the environment, leaving aside the more depressed areas and the implementation of the LEADER approach as well. Therefore, we have come to the conclusion that the current rural development in Extremadura is not sustainable enough. View Full-Text
Keywords: sustainable rural development; EAFRD; LEADER approach; GIS; principal component analysis sustainable rural development; EAFRD; LEADER approach; GIS; principal component analysis
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Cárdenas Alonso, G.; Nieto Masot, A. Towards Rural Sustainable Development? Contributions of the EAFRD 2007–2013 in Low Demographic Density Territories: The Case of Extremadura (SW Spain). Sustainability 2017, 9, 1173.

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