It sufficiently differentiates according to the chief categories of groups of actors – level of income and sectorial source of income, potential, requirement for and type of support – while not being quite as crude, fatalistic or deterministic as the well-known classification by Andrew Dorward into “stepping-up”, “stepping-out” and “hanging-in” farm households.

What support needs to address

With the Five Rural Worlds approach, the need for development co-operation support can often already be sufficiently differentiated. Some examples are given to illustrate this:

Food prices: World 1 produces only for the market; it benefits from high prices. Worlds 4 and 5 are almost exclusively very poor consumers who have to rely on staple crops at low prices. World 3 mainly produces for its own needs, but also to create smaller surpluses and to supply special crops for the market. In total, it is a net consumer. World 2 produces for the market but also to meet its own needs; it is chiefly a net producer.