Rural Sociologists study rural people and the multitude of issues that pertain to rural (or relatively urbanized) areas, as well as issues that involve relationships between urban and rural groups, such as urban sprawl and loss of farmland. Faculty and students in the Department of Rural Sociology explore issues such as social influences on environmental conservation and natural resource consumption, the changing distribution of population across rural and metropolitan communities, the kinds of workers employed in rural industries, why there are conflicts over new technologies such as genetically modified organism crops, and the degree to which progress is being made in the development of low-income countries, to name just a few.

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