Social disadvantage in rural peripheries in Czechia and in eastern Germany: opportunity structures and individual agency in a comparative perspective

Project duration: 
2018 - 2020

The general objective of this project is to investigate the multifaceted interrelations between social disadvantage, opportunity structures, and individual agency in rural peripheries in eastern Germany and Czechia in a comparative perspective. The project offers an innovative research focus on peripheral rural areas in three ways by directing (1) comparative attention at (2) various forms of social disadvantage in dynamically restructuring peripheral rural areas of two post-socialist societies in Central Europe, Czechia and the eastern part of Germany, by (3) focusing on three particularly disadvantaged social groups.

Empirical research has shown that social disadvantage in rural areas, manifested by poverty and deprivation, is far more typical for Central and Eastern European post-socialist transformation societies than for the western parts of Europe (Shucksmith et al. 2009; Spoor 2013). A cross-national research in two post-socialist societies would enable us to gain deeper insights in more general mechanisms of social disadvantage in rural areas and the role of local and regional opportunity structures in two countries, which despite common historical legacies undergo partly different peripheralisation processes. A comparison between Czechia and eastern Germany promises specific insights in similar and different outcomes of the post-socialist transition, rural restructuring and the commodification of rurality.

Principal investigator: 
Dr. Annett Steinführer
Dr. Stefan Neumeier
PD Dr. Andreas Klärner
migration and mobility
social inequalities
Grant agency: 
International project

Project publications (total 1, displaying 1 - 1)

Tagai, Gergely, Bernard, Josef, Šimon, Martin, Koós, Bálint

This study investigates socioeconomic peripherality in Hungary and Czechia. Despite the current attention devoted to peripheries in post-communist societies, the authors argue that there is a lack of data-driven international comparisons of the socio-spatial outcomes of peripheralisation processes.

urban and rural studies, methodology, wages and incomes, social inequalities
Local and regional studies
Type of publication:
Article with impact factor