Here are abstracts to various studies in rural settings:

Alexander, Kim S., Lucy Parry, Phomma Thammavong, Silinthone Sacklokham, Somphanh Pasouvang, John G. Connell, Tom Jovanovic, Magnus Moglia, Silva Larson, & Peter Case (2018, February).Rice farming systems in Southern Lao PDR: Interpreting farmers’ agricultural production decisions using Q methodology. Agricultural Systems, 160, 1–10. (kim.alexander56> is in the College of Business, Law and Governance, Division of Tropical Environments and Societies, James Cook University, Townsville, Australia.]

joaoborges> is in the Agribusiness Program, Federal University of Grande Dourados, Dourados, Brazil.]

a.buckwell> is in the Business School, Griffith University, Nathan Campus, Nathan, Queensland, Australia.]

Doerr, Jan-Tobias, & Gerald Taylor Aiken (2021, March). Transformative pragmatism: How a diversity of Leitbilder is harnessed for rural transformation in Réiden, Luxembourg. Environmental Policy and Governance, 31(2). (ePub in advance of print) (doi: 10.1002/eet.1932) Abstract: This article attempts to further a geographical theory of socio-ecological transformation. Understanding transformation has previously focused on regions, places, networks , or individual and collective spatialities as the unit of analysis pushing change. This article, by contrast, outlines the pragmatic function that individually and collectively held beliefs, goals, and purposes have. We call these guiding visions Leitbilder, and outline how they act as guiding lights, lodestars, that motivate, temper, and contain different people, groups, and initiatives. Where academic work exists here it is often voluntaristic, elective, focused on intentional, opt-in communities and so tends towards studies of "usual suspects." This paper by contrast, addresses those pre-forming radical environmentalist behavior, beyond a conscious or elective identity of being environmental. We do so by outlining the case of Réiden, Luxembourg. We present an in-depth study of four transformative initiatives in different domains and, through Q-method, outline their intricate, mutable, and catalytic interrelationships. We argue that to take proper account of the geography of transformation, the alignment of heterogenous Leitbilder in functionally diverse practice coalitions is crucial. [Jan-Tobias Doerr <jan.doerr> is an independent researcher. Gerald Taylor Aiken <gerald.aiken> is in the Luxembourg Institute of Socio-Economic Research (LISER), Esch/Alzette, Luxembourg.]

Duenckmann, Florian (2010, July). The village in the mind: Applying Q-methodology to re-constructing constructions of rurality. Journal of Rural Studies, 26(3), 284-295. Abstract: In recent years rural studies have focused on the analysis of different notions of ‘the rural’ and how they are constructed in expert discourses as well as in everyday life. Dealing empirically with such patterns of meaning poses special challenges to social science. In this article I want to explore Q-methodology that approaches subjectivity in a particular way. Instead of beginning with the individual – as it is done in case study approaches – or with socio-demographic categories – as surveys usually do – Q-methodology attempts to put the focus of inquiry on the content of subjectivity itself, i.e., the integral views and their internal frame of reference. Q-methodology can be conceived as a hybrid of qualitative and quantitative methodology since it combines mathematical procedures like factor analysis with a genuine constructivist and interpretative approach to ‘reality’. An example of a study in which Q-methodology was applied is presented. The aim of this analysis was to explore the different views of village development and community life that existed in a municipality of the exurban hinterland of Hamburg. As a result of this study three distinct perceptions of rurality are identified: an idyllic, a reform-oriented and an anti-conservationist view. Based on a structured comparison of these three views it is shown how Q-methodology can contribute new perspectives and insights to the debate about social representations of rurality. [Florian Duenckmann <> is in the Department of Geography, University of Bayreuth, Germany.]

Easdale, Marcos, Natalia Pérez León, & Martin Aguiar (2019, February). Strains in sustainability debates: Traditional ecological knowledge and Western science through the lens of extension agents in a pastoral region. Rural Sociology. (ePub in advance of print). (doi: 10.1111/ruso.12268) (Link: easdale.marcos> is with Área de Desarrollo Rural, Instituto Nacional de Tecnología Agropecuaria, Buenos Aires, Argentina.]

Marjainé Szerényi, Zsuzsanna, Ágnes Zsóka, Katalin Ásványi, & Zsuzsanna Flachner (2011). The role of adaptation to climate change in rural development. Regional and Business Studies, 3 (Suppl. 1), 189-198. (Hungary) Abstract. One of the most important consequences of global climate change is expected to be the joint appearance of extreme weather phenomena such as flood, inland inundation, and drought. Human populations living along rivers are most seriously affected by those phenomena. In the frame of the WateRisk-project (financed by the National Research and Technology Office of Hungary), we focused on the small communities living along the river Tisza, exploring the citizens’ opinions regarding the most acceptable possible solutions to water-related problems. Their conformity – also called willingness of adaptation – has been analyzed by two survey methods. Our questionnaire contained several questions on water-related issues, including the willingness of respondents to pay for increasing the proportion of natural and nature-close areas. It also examined the value system and priority setting of inhabitants towards water-related problems, local patriotism, community relationships, economic opportunities, and the natural environment, which opinions have been assessed via Q-methodology (Brown, 1996; Schmolck, 2002). With the help of Q-methodology, a value- and attitude-based behavioral profile of inhabitant groups will be shaped and their willingness and capability of adaptation will be evaluated. [Zsuzsanna Marjainé Szerényi <zsuzsanna.szerenyi> is in the Department of Environmental Economics and Technology, Corvinus University of Budapest, Hungary. The journal Regional and Business Studies is a publication of the Faculty of Economic Science, Kaposvár University, Hungary.]

Milcu, Andra Ioana, Kate Sherren, Jan Hanspach, David Abson, & Joern Fischer (2014, November). Navigating conflicting landscape aspirations: Application of a photo-based Q-method in Transylvania (Central Romania). Land Use Policy, 41, 408–422. (doi: 10.1016/j.landusepol.2014.06.019) Abstract: In combination, the economic realities brought about by globalization, and the sustainability goals set by the European Union, translate into contradictory challenges for European cultural landscapes. With its high natural and cultural diversity, Transylvania (Central Romania) is facing the choice between development based on a “production for profit” logic, with the risks of a liberalized land market, versus a largely untested development pathway based on sustainability, landscape multifunctionality and conservation. In the context of these largely externally imposed and contradictory development pathways, clarifying the viewpoints and preferences of local people is important, and may help explain the outcomes of past policies, as well as inform future interventions. We undertook a photograph-based Q methodology study – interviewing 129 residents from 30 villages – to understand and explore the diverse range of landscape preferences held by locals in Southern Transylvania. We clarified these preferences by identifying groups of participants who shared similar viewpoints regarding local landscapes and their changing purpose. Our findings revealed five different “preference narratives” about Transylvanian landscapes, namely (1) landscapes for prosperity and economic growth; (2) landscapes for traditions and balanced lifestyles; (3) landscapes for human benefit; (4) landscapes for farming; and (5) landscapes for nature. Our systematic assessment of narratives showed areas of consensus and disagreement among participants. We relate the five preference narratives to current management approaches targeting rural landscapes. We conclude by suggesting policy approaches to tackle the diversity of opinions and interests found in this culturally and ecologically diverse landscape. Important policy priorities include fostering economic diversification and improving social capital. [Andra Ioana Milcu <milcu>is in the Institute of Ecology, Faculty of Sustainability, Leuphana Universität, Lüneburg, Germany.]

Naspetti, Simona, Serena Mandolesi, and Raffaele Zanoli (2016). Using visual Q sorting to determine the impact of photovoltaic applications on the landscape. Land Use Policy, 57, 564–573. Abstract: In recent years, some European countries have experienced rapid growth of installation of photovoltaic systems. These systems can involve relevant, and in some cases quite radical, transformations of the landscape, especially in rural areas, and long-term impact on land use. In Italy, this installation of photovoltaic systems has raised concerns over the impact on the landscape and on land use. Visual Q methodology is particularly suited for the assessment of such perceived impact of photovoltaic systems. A selection (concourse) of landscape images with photovoltaic elements was collected and used during this Q-sort analysis. The final Q sample included 54 images of various photovoltaic plants in urban and rural settings. The P set was composed of 34 participants, including landscape and photovoltaic professionals. This analysis identified three distinctive factors that are representative of the different viewpoints on the integration of photovoltaic systems within the urban and rural landscapes. We conclude with a discussion of the wider land-use policy implications of this analysis. [Raffaele Zanoli <zanoli> is in the Department of Agricultural, Food and Environmental Sciences at Università Politecnica delle Marche, Ancona, Italy and was the local host for the 2015 Q conference in Ancona.]

Nijnik, Maria, Albert Nijnik, & Livia Bizikova (2009, May). Analysing the development of small-scale forestry in Central and Eastern Europe. Small-Scale Forestry, 8(2), 159-174. Abstract: The current state and future prospects and challenges of small-scale forestry in Czech Republic, Hungary, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, Romania, Slovakia, Slovenia, and Ukraine are examined, and Q methodology for stakeholder evaluation of forest sustainability and pro-market reforms is applied to an example from Ukraine. Small-scale forestry already provides multiple benefits to the countries in transition. However, these countries differ according to the maturity of the reforms, and the continuing process of transition is being delayed in some of them due to institutional weaknesses, e.g. the authority of government with insufficient involvement of rural communities in decision-making. The necessity of linking international and national sustainable forestry policy to management practices at a local level is especially evident in the countries where bottom-up small-scale adaptive forestry is only starting to catch up with the top-down sustainable forest management principles. The paper highlights the necessity of reconciliation of scientific and conventional knowledge for delivering sustainability objectives to small-scale forestry at a local level. It demonstrates that the social and economic pillars of sustainable forestry reform are of a particular importance for successful performance of small-scale forestry in the countries in transition, as is active involvement of stakeholders and local communities in decision-making and policy implementation. [Maria Nijnik <> is with the Socio-Economic Research Group, The Macaulay Land Use Research Institute, Craigiebuckler, Aberdeen AB15 8QH, Scotland, UK. Albert Nijnik is affiliated with Environmental Network Limited, The Hillock, Tarland, Aboyne AB34 4TJ, Scotland, UK. Livia Bizikova is associated with the Slovak Academy of Sciences, The Institute for Forecasting, Sancova 56, 811 05 Bratislava, Slovakia.]

Parry, Lucy J. (2018). Discourses on foxhunting in the public sphere: A Q methodological study. British Politics. (ePub in advance of print) (Accessible: lucy.parry> is with the Centre for Deliberative Democracy and Global Governance, University of Canberra, Australia; and the Centre for Animals and Social Justice, Sheffield, UK.]

Pirard, Romain, Henri Petit, Himlal Baral, & Ramadan Achdiawan (2016). Perceptions of local people toward pulpwood plantations: Insights from Q-method in Indonesia. International Forestry Review, 18(2), 218-230. Abstract: Industrial timber plantations are controversial in many parts of the world including in Indonesia. Knowledge of their perceived impacts is important for better management and integration into the rural landscape. To advance knowledge on this topic, we applied the Q-method to a case study in East Kalimantan province, Indonesia, where a large-scale acacia plantation is established. Three groups emerge from the analysis with contrasting viewpoints: a first group exhibits enthusiasm over the development of the plantation, including recognition of environmental services provided; the two other groups express dissatisfaction, either generally on all aspects or with a focus on the plantation as obstacle to local development. Research has shown that the Q-method needs to be completed by other tools such as household surveys in order to make for its limitations, e.g., assessing representativeness of each group and determinants of inclusion in one given group. [Romain Pirard <r_pirard> is a Senior Scientist with the Center for International Forestry Research, Indonesia.]

Pirard, Romain, Henri Petit, Himlal Baral, & Ramadhani Achdiawan (2016). Impacts of industrial timber plantations in Indonesia: An analysis of rural populations’ perceptions in Sumatra, Kalimantan and Java (Occasional Paper 149). Bogor, Indonesia: CIFOR [Center for International Forestry Research]. (Accessible: ISBN 978-602-387-027-1. DOI: 10.17528/cifor/006037 Also published as: Dampak Hutan Tanaman Industri di Indonesia: Analisis Persepsi Masyarakat Desa di Sumatera, Jawa dan Kalimantan (CIFOR Occasional Paper no. 153). (Available: ISBN: 978-602-387-034-9. DOI: 10.17528/cifor/006137

Ray, Lilly (2011). Using Q-methodology to identify local perspectives on wildfires in two Koyukon Athabascan communities in rural Alaska. Sustainability, 7(2), 18-29. Abstract: Sustainable resource management depends upon the participation of resource-dependent communities. Competing values between community members and government agencies and among groups within a community can make it difficult to find mutually acceptable management goals and can disadvantage certain resource users. This study uses Q-methodology to discover groups with shared perspectives on wildfire policy in the Koyukon Athabascan villages of Galena and Huslia, Alaska. Before the study, participants appeared to disagree over the amount of wildfire suppression needed, but Q-method results showed three perspectives united around deeper, less oppositional concerns: Caucasian residents and resource managers who preferred natural processes; older Koyukon residents concerned about losing local control, small animals, and cultural places; and younger Koyukon residents who felt subsistence activities were resilient to social-ecological change. Additionally, both Koyukon groups suspected it was cheaper to suppress all wildfires while small. These results imply that community frustration with wildfire management may be reduced through collaborative research with Koyukon elders on locally important issues, cultural site mapping in order to extend some level of wildfire protection, and greater agency transparency about wildfire-suppression costs. The results also indicate that age may be an understudied driver of community resource-use preferences. This study proposes that without identifying resource user-interest groups and their main concerns, it is difficult to develop equitable environmental goals. It shows how Q-methodology provides a systematic approach for identifying the stakeholders and issues needed in resource management. [Lily Ray <> is with Natural Resources, Kawerak, Inc., Nome, AK; the Resilience and Adaptation Program, University of Alaska, Fairbanks; and the Graduate School of Geography, Clark University, Worcester, MA, USA.]

Rodriguez-Piñeros, Sandra & Yesica Mayett-Moreno (2014, July). Forest owners’ perceptions of ecotourism: Integrating community values and forest conservation. AMBIO (online first). sandra.rodriguez> is affiliated with the Facultad de Zootecnia y Ecología, Universidad Autónoma de Chihuahua, México. Yesica Mayett-Moreno is with the Centro Interdisciplinario de Posgrados, Universidad Popular Autónoma del Estado de Puebla (UPAEP), Mexico.]

Schall, Daniel, David Lansing, Paul Leisnham, Adel Shirmohammadi, Hubert Montas, & Tom Hutson(2018). Understanding stakeholder perspectives on agricultural best management practices and environmental change in the Chesapeake Bay: A Q methodology study. Journal of Rural Studies, 60, 21-31. (Link: dlansing> is at the University of Maryland Baltimore County, Baltimore, MD (USA).]

Slaughter, Yvette, Joseph Lo Bianco, Renata Aliani, Russell Cross, & John Hajek (2019, December). Language programming in rural and regional Victoria: Making space for local viewpoints in policy development. Australian Review of Applied Linguistics, 42(3), 274-300. (Link: ymslau> is in the Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne, Melbourne, Australia.]

Upadhaya, Suraj, & Puneet Dwivedi (2019, August). Blue over green? Defining typologies of rurallandowners growing blueberry in place of forests in Georgia, United States. Human Ecology. (ePub in advance of print) (doi: 10.1007/s10745-019-00095-7) Abstract: Ricardian Rent Theory is typically used for analyzing land use change decisions of rurallandowners. However, to the best of our knowledge no study focuses on the motivations of landowners for their land use change decisions in general and deforestation in particular. This information is important for southern Georgia, where more than 6,000 ha of evergreen forestland were moved into blueberry production between 2010 and 2017. We surveyed 34 family landowners who had moved to blueberry production to ascertain their motivations and analyzed the data using Q-methodology to categorize them into four typologies: Family Oriented landowners grow blueberry as a family legacy; Value Seeking landowners want higher value over time from their land; Environmental Cautious landowners grow blueberry for profit, but recognize a link between deforestation and blueberry expansion; finally, Profit Motivated landowners grow blueberry for higher profits in a short period and clearly recognize forestry as a long-term investment. The majority of surveyed blueberry farmers suggested that with appropriate financial incentives, they would practice forestry rather than higher risk blueberry farming. Our findings provide insights for policymakers in designing incentives for achieving sustainable land management and ensuring the multifunctionality of rural landscapes in Georgia and surrounding states facing similar issues. [Suraj Upadhaya <suraj.upadhaya> and Puneet Dwivedi <puneetd> are in the Warnell School of Forestry and Natural Resources, University of Georgia, Athens, GA (USA).]

Zografos, Christos (2007). Rurality discourses and the role of the social enterprise in regenerating rural Scotland. Journal of Rural Studies, 23, 38–51. Abstract: Social enterprises are businesses with primarily social objectives that reinvest their surplus in the community rather than seeking to maximise profit for shareholders. However, there is a debate regarding the drivers and the role of the social enterprise, the outcome of which is expected to have serious implications for the future of the institution [Brady, C., 2003. Social Enterprise development and the Role of the Social Economy in Scotland. CBS Network, Edinburgh]. A ‘reformist’ view supports the position that social enterprises are simple extensions of existing economic systems, whereas a ‘radical’ stance sees them as the embodiment of an alternative vision of running local economies. Development Trusts (DTs) are social enterprises that focus on community regeneration. Our research explored DT stakeholder views regarding the role of DTs in regenerating rural Scotland. Using Q methodology [Barry, J., Proops, J., 1999. Seeking sustainability discourses with Q methodology. Ecological Economics, 28, 337–345], we drew on ‘rurality’ discourses [Frouws, J., 1998. The contested redefinition of the countryside. An analysis of rural discourses in The Netherlands. Sociologia Ruralis 38(1), 54–68] expressed by DT stakeholders in order to investigate how these discourses informed their views. Radical positions were mostly associated with a hedonist rurality discourse and were split into three sub-discourses, whereas reformist positions mostly reflected a utilitarian rurality discourse. There was consensus between discourses in rejecting a primary DT contribution to rural regeneration by substituting state and local authority functions in rural Scotland. Results suggest that stakeholders prefer that DTs develop their own agendas and activity rather than try to substitute unsuccessful state or local authority provision of rural services. Social enterprise strategies and support policies promoting a service-providing role for DTs in rural Scotland should consider this issue if they are to avoid stakeholder objection and contribute to the success of DTs in becoming active vehicles of rural regeneration. [Christos Zografos <> is with the Institut de Cie`ncia i Tecnologia Ambientals (ICTA), Universitat Auto`noma de Barcelona, 08193 Bellaterra, Barcelona, Spain.]