Module Information

Module Identifier
Module Title
The Global Countryside: Geographical and Sociological Perspectives
Academic Year
Semester 2
Reading List
Other Staff

Course Delivery



Assessment Type Assessment length / details Proportion
Semester Assessment End of module assessment  1500 Words  50%
Semester Assessment Consultancy Report  2500 Words  50%
Supplementary Assessment End of Module Assessment  1500 Words  50%
Supplementary Assessment Consultancy Report  2500 Words  50%

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this module students should be able to:

Articulate a critique of globalization and of related concepts including neoliberalism and cosmopolitanism.

Demonstrate knowledge and understanding of globalization processes and their working in rural settings, and of the range of actors and processes engaged in the reconstitution of rural places under globalization.

Apply knowledge and appreciation of globalization in a rural context to the analysis of contemporary issues, potentially including food security, energy security, trade liberalization, global poverty, international migration and animal welfare.

Demonstrate an awareness and appreciation of diverse experiences of, and opinions on, globalization with respect to rural societies and economies.

Competently assemble, interrogate and analyse appropriate evidence from a range of sources, including academic literature, policy documents and reports, news reports and popular media, statistical data, and web resources.

Brief description

The module examines the impact of globalization in rural areas and the responses of rural societies, economies and cultures to global processes and forces, with examples drawn from both the Global North and the Global South. The module aims to demonstrate the interdependency of rural regions in the contemporary world, as well as the agency of rural actors in reproducing globalization and the hybrid processes through which rural localities are reconstituted in the emergent global countryside. The module starts by introducing the key conceptual perspectives and by providing an historical context by examining the export of European models of rurality in the colonial era and the integration of the colonial countryside into global trade networks. The middle section of the module explores the economic, social and cultural dimensions of globalization, focusing in turn on agriculture (including the impact of trade liberalization and the role of transnational corporations), mining and forestry, global tourism and amenity migration, international labour migration (including concepts of translocal villages and rural cosmopolitanism), and tensions between the articulation of global values and traditional rural cultural practices in areas such as farm animal welfare and hunting. The final part of the module discusses models of rural development in the global era and political resistance to globalization in rural societies, including mobilization of transnational agrarian movements.


  • Globalization, Rurality and the Global Countryside
  • Colonialism, Trade and Global Integration in the Historical Rural
  • Globalizing Agriculture
  • Neoliberalism, Natural Resources and the Final Frontier
  • Debate: Global Free Trade and Rural Society
  • Tourism and Amenity Migration in the Global Countryside
  • International Labour Migration and Rural Cosmopolitanism
  • Rural Cultures and the Globalization of Values
  • Rural Development in the Global Era
  • Contesting the Global Countryside

Module Skills

Skills Type Skills details
Application of Number Statistical evidence will be used to illustrate points in lectures and students will be guided to relevant statistical databases. Students may elect to utilize and analyze quantitative data in the consultancy report.
Communication Written presentation skills developed through the consultancy report, including guidance on the appropriate presentation of such reports; oral presentation skills developed through the role-playing debate.
Improving own Learning and Performance Individual feedback will be provided to students on the consultancy report and oral presentation. Individual or collective feedback will be provided on the exam, depending on numbers registered and the timing of the exam.
Information Technology Students will be expected to obtain and analyse information from a range of sources, including websites and other electronic resources. Guidance will be given on accessing and analyzing appropriate web resources. Students will need to demonstrate skill in the use of IT in the presentation of the consultancy report.
Personal Development and Career planning The consultancy report is designed to replicate a task which may be encountered in many graduate careers and to develop the skills of students in applying academic knowledge to practical issues. Themes covered in the module are relevant as foundational knowledge for careers in areas such as economic development, international development and aid, policy research, central and local government, planning, agricultural and forestry management, etc.
Problem solving Lectures and reading will cover both 'academic problems' of understanding processes shaping contemporary rural localities, and 'applied problems' related to issues such as food security, energy security, trade liberalization, etc.
Research skills Independent research utilizing a range of resources will be required for the consultancy report and the role-playing debate
Team work Not developed.


This module is at CQFW Level 6