‘Rural Development: Knowledge and expertise in governance‘ is a book recently released by the Center for Development Research (ZEF) in Bonn, Germany. According to the authors the book offers a unique perspective on rural development, by discussing the most influential perspectives and rendering their risks and benefits visible.
The authors do not present a silver bullet. Rather, they give students, researchers, community leaders, politicians, concerned citizens and development organisations the conceptual tools to understand how things are organized now, which development path has already been taken, and how things could possibly move in a different direction.
In addition, they also pay special attention to the different roles of knowledge in rural development; that is both expert knowledge in various guises and local knowledge. Drawing on experiences in five continents, the authors develop a theoretical framework which elucidates how modes of governance and rural development are inextricably tied. A community is much better placed to choose direction, when it understands these ties.