Estructura espacial y asentamiento rural en el Caribe anglófono
Rojas, Eduardo; Banco Interamericano de Desarrollo
The paper analyzes the main characteristics of the structure of rural settlements in the Anglophone Caribbean and identifies a set of interrelated constraints to rural development arising out of the spatial structure of these settlements. High population pressure over scarce land resources, concentrated ownership of the best agricultural lands and permanent damage to the resource base as result of the land scarcity affecting small farmers, are spatial factors identified in the paper as leading to structural poverty in the rural population. The paper argues that rural povertry prevents the majority of the population from benefiting from the many advantages arising out of the relatively good spatial accesibility that the rural population has to goods and services supplied in urban areas. These considerations lead to the conclusion that the advancement of the rural population require structural changes in the agricultural sector that include the modification of spatial components, like the land distribution structure. The paper concludes that in the Anglophone Caribbean, economic development options are increasingly determined by spatial factors, a revertion of the situation prevailing in the pre-independence period where the spatial structure was functional to the development pattern dominated by the plantation system.