Understanding rural deprivation: findings report

Alistair Geddes, Donald Houston

    Research output: Book/ReportBook


    Deprivation of access to services is overwhelmingly more widespread in rural congregational areas.
    Rural congregational areas have fewer areas within them with very low levels of deprivation.
    Rural congregational areas have a higher population dependency ratio (non-working age : working age).
    However, overall social deprivation as measured by the Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation (SIMD) 2009 is lower in rural congregational areas than urban congregational areas.

    The conventional practice of using geographic units to analyse deprivation misses small pockets of deprivation in rural areas – when counts of deprived people rather than deprived places are used, the difference in deprivation between rural and urban areas is substantially narrowed.
    Geographic access to services is overwhelming poorer in rural areas than urban areas, and the overall SIMD does not fully capture this large discrepancy.
    The SIMD is arguably a more accurate measure of social deprivation in urban areas because it is focused on major social ills that are more prevalent in large towns and cities – for example, social isolation is not included, which could be expected to be a greater problem in rural areas.
    The SIMD is a better summary measure of deprivation in urban areas because rural areas often score highly on some aspects of deprivation but not others – in contrast, deprived urban neighbourhoods tend to score highly on all aspects of deprivation (with the exception of access to services).
    Original languageEnglish
    Place of PublicationEdinburgh
    PublisherChurch of Scotland
    Commissioning bodyChurch of Scotland
    Number of pages23
    Publication statusPublished - Jan 2012


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