Published: 17th Jul 2009

‘Rural proofing’ is a deceptively simple concept. It’s a government commitment that as policy is developed and implemented, policy makers should: think about possible differential impacts in rural areas; assess what these might be; and then plan and deliver appropriate adjustments. The Commission for Rural Communities (CRC) has recently reviewed the experience of ‘rural proofing’. We concluded that in order to be effective, rural proofing must happen as policy is developed and considered, not just at the end. We concluded that the following responsibilities should apply. Ex-ante rural proofing, that is active consideration (research, impact analysis etc) of possible rural impacts before and during policy development and its implementation is the responsbility of government departments and agencies. But also of delivery bodies (e.g. RDAs); European Union; local authorities and their partners; helped by advice from CRC, Defra, stakeholders, and helped by customer and citizen feedback.  And then ex-post rural proofing, that is … (To read the full article, subscribe below)