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Scottish Executive Urban Rural Classification 2005-2006



The Office of the Chief Statistician is committed to continuing to improve the evidence base. Environment and Rural Affairs Department Analytical Services Division have been working with OCS to improve the rural evidence base.

The Scottish Executive's Partnership Agreement sets out that the Scottish Executive will ensure that rural and remote communities have their distinct needs reflected across the range of government policy and initiatives. This classification supports the commitment and develops our understanding of the issues facing urban, rural and remote Scotland.

The Scottish Executive Urban Rural Classification (version 2005-2006, which updates the 2003-2004 version) was first released in 2000 and is consistent with the Executive's core definition of rurality which defines settlements of 3,000 or less people to be rural. It also classifies areas as remote based on drive times from settlements of 10,000 or more people. The definitions of urban and rural areas underlying the classification are unchanged.

The publication includes background information and guidance on the use of the classification and also the geographic information to allow analysts to use the classification in their research.

The wider dissemination and use of the classification will improve the evidence base on urban, rural and remote Scotland.

Office of the Chief Statistician
Scottish Executive
August 2006