Demographic change in Australia's rural landscapes: implications for society and environment
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Demographic change in Australia's rurallandscapes: implications for society andenvironmentRae Dufty-Jonesaa University of Western Sydney, Paramatta, NSW, AustraliaPublished online: 09 Dec 2013.
To cite this article: Rae Dufty-Jones (2013) Demographic change in Australia's rural landscapes:implications for society and environment, Australian Geographer, 44:4, 486-487, DOI:10.1080/00049182.2013.852501
To link to this article: http://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00049182.2013.852501
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Demographic change in Australias rural landscapes: implications forsociety and environmentGARY W. LUCK, DIGBY RACE & ROSEMARY BLACK (eds), 2010Springer, Dordrecht. Published jointly with CSIRO Publishing, Collingwood,Australia406 pp. ISBN 978-90-481-9652-4, 149.99 (hard); ISBN 978-90-481-9654-8,124.94 (e-book)
How Australias population is distributed geographically and the way in which thisdistribution changes is a long-term concern of Australian geographers. It is alsosomething that remains a key issue for planners and policy makers as they try tomanage the dynamic and regionally specific impacts of demographic change. Thegeography of demographic change in Australia, particularly that affecting ruralAustralia, is a central concern for this text. However, the text is guided by a desireto show that the geographic dimensions of demographic change are more complexthan a steady leakage of rural people to the cities (p. 2). The 16 chapters that makeup this collection go a long way to capturing this complexity.
A central feature of the contemporary complexity of demographic change in ruralAustralia is the role of amenity and the various catch-all titles that attempt torepresent this type of internal migration such as sea- and tree-change. We knowamenity is an important factor in marketing rural locations to prospective migrants(Connell & McManus, Rural Revival, 2011); however, a number of chapters inthis collection provide further insight into this demographic trend using nationaland in-depth case studies on who amenity migrants are, why they are moving tothese regions and what their impacts are socially and environmentally (Chapter 2,Argent et al.; Chapter 3, Bohnet & Moore; Chapter 4, Ragusa). While touching ontraditional concerns of rural youth out-migration, an ageing population andcounter-urbanisation, the focus on amenity provides a timely reinvigoration ofthese rural demography themes.
With the physical assets of a rural region being a key factor contributing topopulation growth, the environmental consequences of demographic change in ruralAustralia also feature heavily in this text. Chapters range from analysis of the impactof population growth on how rural land is used, such as the impact of peri-urbandevelopment on agricultural productivity (Chapter 6, Pal & HaslamMcKenzie), tothe role of amenity migration influencing where commercial forestry ventures havetaken place in South East Australia (Chapter 9, Stewart et al.). Other chaptersexamine the effects that both population decline and growth have had on naturalresource management and conservation strategies in a variety of rural regions(Chapter 5, Luck; Chapter 8, Mendham et al.; Chapter 10, Farmar-Bowers).
The consequences of rural demographic change are also examined from a socialperspective. The studies presented are diverse, including conventional concerns ofhow to provide health care in regions with declining populations (Chapter 13,Larson), how to attract experienced teachers into rural regions (Chapter 14,Boylan) and how multiple generations of women with a farming background areconsidering their futures both on the family farm and in rural locations (Chapter12, Muenstermann). However, the dynamic nature of recent rural demographicchanges also means that research is presented on the impact of immigration on thebuilt environment of rural spaces (Chapter 11, Jordan et al.) and the challenges ofthe mining boom and a fly-in fly-out workforce (Chapter 15, Haslam McKenzie).
486 Book Reviews
Running strongly through many of the chapters in this collection is the theoreticalframework of the multifunctional transition. While it is over a decade since JohnHolmes seminal work on this concept (in part as a response to the gaps in anorthern post-productive perspective) the collection effectively demonstrates howthis theoretical approach can usefully expand our understandings of rural demo-graphic change and its social and environmental impacts.
There are many chapters that Australian rural geographers (from students toacademics) will want to pick up and read from this collection. As outlined above,the collection is an example of how the concept of the multifunctional transitioncan be usefully applied and the important new insights, particularly on theenvironment, that this approach produces. What is also laudable about thiscollection is the extent to which many of the chapters go to providing explicitguidance and recommendations for policy practitioners grappling with the impactsof these changes.
RAE DUFTY-JONESUniversity of Western Sydney, Paramatta, NSW, Australiar.firstname.lastname@example.org 2013, Rae Dufty-Joneshttp://dx.doi.org/10.1080/00049182.2013.852501
Welcome to our world? Immigration and the reshaping of New ZealandPAUL SPOONLEY & RICHARD BEDFORD, 2012Dunmore Publishing, Auckland, New Zealand325 pp. ISBN 978-1-927-21200-4, NZ$42.99 (soft)
Few countries have been more influenced, and continue to be influenced, byinternational migration than New Zealand. International comparisons put NewZealand in the top 10 countries of both immigration and emigration in relationto its resident population. This book tells the story of the immigration dimensionin a comprehensive, well-argued and informed way. Two of New Zealands leadingsocial scientists have drawn together their own research and that of others toproduce a definitive, cohesive, multidisciplinary treatment of the nature, drivers,impacts and implications of immigration historically, in the contemporary situationand in the near future.
The book is written in a narrative style with limited use of data except inChapter 3, which is concerned with outlining the elements in the contemporaryNew Zealand migration system. The authors objective is (pp. 1819) to address
the size and composition of the migratory flows to New Zealand andissues of settlement the ways in which New Zealanders and key domesticinstitutions have conceived of immigration, the role it has played increating New Zealand society, policy makers such as the way in whichimmigrants have been recruited and selected, and the various impacts forboth immigrants and host communities.
Book Reviews 487