The Rural Studies Research Cluster includes researchers with interests in developing and extending the theoretical, conceptual and empirical boundaries of rural studies, with particular reference to their spatial dimensions. One of the principal themes underpinning such research is the nature of social, economic, political and cultural restructuring of rural areas under processes of globalization, and the understanding of rural localities as sites through which these and other influences are negotiated, contested and reproduced. This posits the rural as relational, with the attendant conceptual and practical challenges of reimagining and remaking rural place. In methodological and analytical terms, the context-specific nature of such change implies a diversity of approaches that can take account of issues of scale, location, interface and situatedness.