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This book intends to provide analytical and policy tools for investigating the question of the development of rural and peri-urban areas. The aim is to shed some light on this topic and in particular to contribute to a better understanding of the link between issues of regional or territorial development and issues of rural development. The text addresses the question of the disputed notions and definitions of rural development in rural and regional studies, examines the literature of regional and territorial development and the policies of regional development and planning. It also presents scenarios for the future of rural areas, with a focus on European territories.