This has been reflected in urban and rural development, with urban planning usually concentrating on urban nodes and infrastructure such as housing and transportation with little or no attention given to food and agriculture, while rural development has had a tendency to ignore urban centres and define rural areas as consisting only of villages and their agricultural land. The classification that divides people into either 'rural' or 'urban' is often used when policies are being developed but is in fact misleading and unhelpful. Links exist between rural and urban locations in the same way that links exist between people and their activities. This, however, does not reflect the reality of households' livelihoods, which often include both rural and urban elements.

Rural-urban linkages are manifold

Rural and urban areas exist across a broad “rural-urban continuum”, ranging from megacities and large regional centres to small townships and the rural hinterland. Besides the fact that rural areas were always dependent on cities, that interdependence has become more profound nowadays, also facilitated by greater access to traditional and virtual communications.