In most of the developing countries, rural planning is one of the major challenges before proportionate development since it plays an integral role in the overall success of sustainable development plans. According to planners, this integral role is because of the simple fact that the roots of most of the developmental problems including poverty, regional and local inequalities, unemployment, immigration, creation of suburban slums, and social disorders can be traced back to the unsolved problems of rural areas. Thus, concerted attention to the sustainable development of rural areas can be the solution to many problems of developing countries. Slight exploration on this subject shows that the main reason behind the major problems of rural areas is their growing economic weakness and instability. Given that one of the major aspects of sustainable development is the topic of sustainable economy, proper consideration of this issue in rural settlements is as important as it is for the development of cities. Many researchers have stressed that identification of sustainability criteria including those associated with economic sustainability plays a special role in the acceleration of sustainable rural development as the accurate identification of these criteria allows for the evaluation of economic sustainability, accurately and comprehensively, and will be also a major boon for purposeful planning and allocation of resources. On this basis, this research is aimed to identify the criteria of economic sustainability in rural areas of Iran and classify them in three categories of economic stability, economic well-being, and economic fairness. The criteria identified by this research allow rural development planners to evaluate the economic sustainability of Iran’s rural areas in shorter time and with much lesser cost and effort.
Rural Area; Rural Sustainable Development; Economic Sustainability; Criteria of Economic Sustainability.