Rural Lives: Understanding financial hardship and vulnerability in rural areas

Mark Shucksmith, Polly Chapman, Jayne Glass, Jane Atterton

Research output: Book/Report/Policy Brief/Technical BriefCommissioned reportpeer-review

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Recent analysis shows that half of all rural residents in Britain fell into poverty at some time during 1991-2008, and the Financial Conduct Authority found in 2018 that more than half of rural residents exhibit financial vulnerability.
This project investigates why and how people in rural areas experience (and negotiate) poverty and social exclusion, with a focus on financial hardship and vulnerability. It examines the roles of societal processes, individual circumstances and various sources of support (markets; state; voluntary and community organisations; family and friends). Interviews were conducted with individuals experiencing financial vulnerability and representatives of organisations offering support in three case study areas between October 2019 and September 2020, so both before and during the Covid-19 pandemic. The study areas were Harris, East Perthshire and Northumberland.
Original languageEnglish
Commissioning bodyStandard Life Foundation
Number of pages38
Publication statusPrint publication - 22 Mar 2021


  • rural
  • poverty
  • social exclusion
  • financial hardship
  • financial vulnerability
  • COVID-19
  • rural business
  • tourism
  • housing
  • community
  • welfare
  • social policy
  • rural policy


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