What Factors Influence Rural Settlements?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

Rural Settlements are influenced by three factors namely physical factors, ethnic and cultural factors, and historical or defensive factors. Rural settlement refers to any settlement in a country’s rural area. Rural settlements are classified as clustered, agglomerated, or nucleated, semi-clustered or fragmented, hamletted, dispersed, or isolated.

Factors Influencing Rural Settlements

The details on the factors that influence rural settlement are given below:

  • Physical Factors: Climate, drainage, relief, altitude, soil capability, groundwater level, and so on are examples. These factors have an impact on the type and spacing of dwellings. In Rajasthan, for example, water is a critical factor, and houses are built along a pond or well, which guides the settlement’s compactness.
  • Ethnic and Cultural Factors: These encompass various aspects such as caste, community, religion, and ethnicity. In India, it is very common that the main land-owning caste resides at the centre of the village whereas the other service-providing castes are on the periphery.
  • Historical or Defence Factors: Outsiders used to frequently attack the border areas of the northwestern plains. For a long time, aside from external attacks, there had been a constant struggle within the country between princely states and kingdoms; as a result, security concerns favoured the evolution of nucleated settlements.

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