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SCARLED – Structural Change in Agriculture and Rural Livelihoods

Project duration:
01.01.2007 - 31.12.2009

The discussion regarding the reform of the Common Agricultural Policy (CAP) was and still is challenging due to the varying needs and interests of the old and new member states (NMS) of the European Union (EU). Until today, the NMS display tremendous disparities in most structural and socio-economic indicators compared to the EU15 average, implying that further sectoral restructuring is needed.

The Structural Change in Agriculture and Rural Livelihoods (SCARLED) project, which ran from 2007 until 2010, offers rich empirical insights with a specific focus on these processes in the NMS.

SCARLED offers three key lessons for CAP reform. First, it claims that a uniform CAP only partially addresses the needs of NMS. Second, the regionʼs agriculture still requires support to enhance competitiveness, albeit for a limited time. Third, the issue of small, subsistence-based farms in the region needs to be recognised. However, approaches aiming at poverty alleviation in such subsistence-based households, but also in landless rural households, need to look beyond the agricultural sector. The wider rural economy and improving education, as well as rural-urban linkages, need to be included in any poverty related policy approach, be it at the national or the EU level.


  • Consortium Leader/Coordination: Leibniz Institute of Agricultural Development in Transition Economies (IAMO), Germany
  • Corvinus University of Budapest, Department of Agricultural Economics and Rural Development, Hungary Website
  • Banat's University of Agricultural Sciences and Veterinary Medicine, Romania Website
  • LICOS Centre for Institutions and Economic Performance at the University of Leuven (KU Leuven), The Netherlands Website
  • Newcastle University, Centre for Rural Economy, United Kingdom Website
  • University of Ljubljana (UL), Slovenia Website
  • University of Kent, Kent Business School, United Kingdom Website
  • University of National and World Economy, Bulgaria Website
  • University of Warsaw, Faculty of Economic Sciences, Poland Website
  • Research Institute of Agricultural Economics (AKI), Hungary Website

Qualification Works

The following theses are part of the project:

  • Determinants of non-farm entrepreneurial intentions in a transitional context: evidence from rural Bulgaria (Carried out by: Diana Traikova)
  • The level of interregional disparities and approaches for the development of rural areas in Central and Eastern Europe (Carried out by: Sabine Baum)