2nd CFP: Royal Geographical Society Conference (with IBG), Imperial College London, 27-30 August 2019
Session title: Rural to where? Rural young people’s geographies in mobility, learning, trajectories and hopefulness
Session organisers: Assoc. Prof. Tracey Skelton [firstname.lastname@example.org]
Jessica Clendenning [Jessica.email@example.com]
Geography, National University of Singapore
Co-sponsoring groups: 1) Geographies of Children, Youth & Families Research Group (CYFRG); 2) Developing Areas Research Group (DARG)
Globally, rural young people, compared to their urban counterparts, are relatively understudied and/or misunderstood in academic discourse and policy debates (Panelli et al. 2007; Jeffrey 2008; Punch 2015). These trends, however, may be shifting as some major development organisations focus on ‘youth’, and examine rural development and gender dynamics more closely (e.g., CTA and IFAD 2014; UNESCO 2016; UN Women 2017; FAO 2018). This session builds upon both ‘troubled’ and ‘hopeful’ foci in policy and academic studies on rural youth transitions and mobility (e.g., Chant and Jones 2005; Crivello 2010; Punch and Sugden 2013; Cuervo and Wynn 2014; Farrugia 2016; Woronov 2016; Chea and Huijsmans 2018) to understand rural young people’s educational pathways for navigating opportunities, challenges and precarity. The session examines details about how these pathways affect localised and informal learning (e.g., Katz 2004), and the choices and alternatives young people have in education, training, and making a living.
This session explores how rural youth (including those in small towns) use and access various forms of mobility, education or training (e.g. vocational, technical, formal) to improve their skills for work, self-employment, further migration, etc., and the outcomes or consequences of such investments. Questions for analysis may include:
The aim of this session is to address topics relating to young people’s current trajectories in rural areas. We anticipate diverse research and discussions that center on rural youth’s hopes and troubles, obstacles and opportunities, that they must navigate in a wide variety of contexts and countries. We look forward to discussing new methodologies and perspectives, and invite scholars from all academic (and non-academic) fields, including (but not limited to) human geography, political ecology, environmental sociology, anthropology, gender and women’s studies, youth studies, etc.
Interested participants should email: their names, affiliations, email addresses, paper titles and abstracts (250 words) to both Tracey Skelton () and Jessica Clendenning ( ) by Tuesday, February 12th. We look forward to meeting you in London!
Meg Sherval (The University of Newcastle) on behalf of Tracey Skelton (National University of Singapore).