The renewal of the French countryside: myth or reality?

Audio 48:30

Landscape of wheat fields.

Pixabay / Magdalenalena

By: Emmanuelle Bastide

51 mins

According to a poll carried out after the first confinement, nearly 20% of French people said they were ready to leave the city for the countryside.


Already a reality for some since they are 100,000 to take the plunge each year.

Revival of the economy, enhancement of local know-how, a revival seems to be taking place with the arrival of the neorurals.

However, the digital divide, medical deserts or high unemployment rates still remain a reality for many rural areas.

Does the future really play out in the countryside?

With :

Vincent Grimault

, journalist for the magazine

Alternatives économique,

and author of

La renaissance des campaigns


Benoît Coquard

, sociologist at the

National Institute of Agronomic Research (INRAE)

in Dijon (

Cesaer Laboratory

- Center for economics and sociology applied to agriculture and rural areas), and author of the book 

Those Who Stay

( The Discovery, 2019).

A report in Crest in the Drôme in France.

Our reporter

Inès Edel Garcia

met Marie and Anne-Sophie from Villages Vivants, a cooperative created in 2018 which buys empty shops, renovates them and rents them at favorable rents, with the aim of setting up projects useful to the territories and to strong social impact.

This can be a cooperative bookstore, a country bistro, a third place, an associative grocery store, a bicycle repair shop.

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