Over half the world's people live in the rural areas of the Third World, their well-being directly affected by the pace and pattern of rural development. Demographic change is a major influence on development and, in turn, rural economic and social conditions have important demographic effects. Population-rural development interrelations, however, are not uniform across societies: they are modulated by society-specific forms of social organization and by the rules and routines of economic and political behavior--in short, by institutional structures. The papers collected in this volume explore the various aspects of this institutional contingency, particularly in Asian and African settings, and draw out implications for development strategy. The papers are grouped by the institutional domain with which they are principally concerned: agrarian production systems; labor market institutions; government administrative organization and legal systems; village and community structures; and family systems. The volume thus gives due weight to the policy significance of familiar economic institutions such as agrarian property rights and labor relations but seeks to direct equal attention to other institutional domains, largely neglected in the study of rural development, that are likely to be just as important in governing agrarian economic and demographic outcomes. A concluding chapter looks at the influences on Third World rural development, both positive and negative, emanating from the developed countries.McNicholl, Geoffrey is the author of 'Rural Development and Population: Institutions and Policy - a Supplement to Population and Development Review, Vol. 15, 1989' with ISBN 9780195068498 and ISBN 0195068491.