© 2019

Rural Areas Between Regional Needs and Global Challenges

Transformation in Rural Space

  • Walter Leimgruber
  • Chang-yi David Chang


  • Provides insight in the diversity of marginalization and demarginalization trends

  • Examines rural areas around all five continents of the world

  • Contributes to the on-going discussions on geographical marginality


Part of the Perspectives on Geographical Marginality book series (PGEO, volume 4)

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xviii
  2. Introduction

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
  3. People

  4. Transformation Processes

  5. Primary Activities

  6. Towards a Multifunctional Rural Space

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 243-244

About this book


This book provides an up-to-date account of the many processes shaping and transforming rural space in various parts of the world. The various case studies focus on the multi-functionality of the rural world and the driving forces behind it. The book demonstrates that rural areas are no longer simply characterized by an agricultural economy, and instead accommodate multiple complementary activities. It also touches upon two major changes that have taken place. The first is the process of rurbanization, which has led to the clear distinction between town and countryside becoming blurred: urban traits have penetrated rural areas, and rural traits have invaded towns. The second change is that rural areas are increasingly seen as multi-functional, providers not only of food and other natural resources but also locations for the generation of renewable energy (wind farms, solar farms, biogas) and regions for the preservation of biodiversity. These transformations have resulted in a new understanding and self-image of rural areas and their populations.


Rurbanization Marginalization and Globalization Agriculture and Forestry Diversity of Rural Space Political Economy and Alternative Energy Sustainability of Rural Spaces Rural Dynamics Rural Areas Rural Threaths Urban Farming

Editors and affiliations

  • Walter Leimgruber
    • 1
  • Chang-yi David Chang
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Geosciences, Geography UnitUniversity of FribourgFribourgSwitzerland
  2. 2.Dharma Drum Institute of Liberal ArtsNew Taipei CityTaiwan

About the editors

Walter Leimgruber’s research interests include boundaries and transborder relations, regional development and inequality issues. He graduated and obtained his PhD from the University of Basle, Switzerland, where he worked from 1975 to 1980. From 1982 till his retirement in 2009 he taught human geography at the University of Fribourg, Switzerland. He has authored and edited/co-edited 7 books. He was President of the Association of Swiss Geographers (ASG) 1987 to 1989 and Chair of the Swiss National Committee IGU 1989 to 1992. 2001 to 2004 he directed the Centre d’Etudes, de Recherche et de Documentation sur l’Afrique à Fribourg (CERDAF) He chaired the IGU Commission on Evolving Issues on Geographical Marginality in the Early 21st Century World from 2000 to 2004 and has been its secretary since..

Chang-yi David Chang is currently the Chair Professor, Environmental and Development Program, Dharma Drum Institute of Liberal Arts. He was the chair of IGU Commission on Islands (2006–2016) and serves as a member of IHDP GLOLAL Change Commission, Academia Sinica, Taiwan. His research interests include environmental resources conservation and management in marginal regions. He is a member of international editorial advisory board of Geographiska Annaler, series B. He also published the book “Environmental Struggle in Taiwan” with professor J.F. Williams at Michigan State University in 2008. He was a Professor at National Taiwan University, where he taught at the Department of Geography from 1976 to 2010. He was the President of Geographical Society of Taiwan and the chair of IGU National Committee-Taiwan from 1999 to 2003. As a volunteer worker, he has also served as the President of the Taipei Yunhe Community University, which supports adult continuing education and social reform since the year 2000.

Bibliographic information

  • Book Title Rural Areas Between Regional Needs and Global Challenges
  • Book Subtitle Transformation in Rural Space
  • Editors Walter Leimgruber
    Chang-yi David Chang
  • Series Title Perspectives on Geographical Marginality
  • Series Abbreviated Title Perspectives on Geographical Marginality
  • DOI
  • Copyright Information Springer Nature Switzerland AG 2019
  • Publisher Name Springer, Cham
  • eBook Packages Social Sciences Social Sciences (R0)
  • Hardcover ISBN 978-3-030-04392-6
  • eBook ISBN 978-3-030-04393-3
  • Series ISSN 2367-0002
  • Series E-ISSN 2367-0010
  • Edition Number 1
  • Number of Pages XVIII, 312
  • Number of Illustrations 38 b/w illustrations, 34 illustrations in colour
  • Topics Human Geography
    Landscape/Regional and Urban Planning
  • Buy this book on publisher's site