Architecture and Planning ETDs

Publication Date



Important changes, which have ocurred in the Venezuelan's class structure have resulted in a significant shift in the balance of political power producing more participation by the people. Today, in an attempt to release the country's economy from foreign domination, the state is taking a series of steps such as : nationalization of raw materials, improvement of human values, agrarian reform etc. Not withstanding, the positive changes undergoing, there exists a privileged minority which has strong economic power (capital, land and commerce). This minority, whose economic interests are usually subordinated to foreign capitalistic organizations has control upon the domestic market activities and therefore monopolizes the state’s economic factors such as loans and investments. While this dominant group enjoys a luxurious way of living, there is a very large number of Venezuelans, at the margins of the national economy, who live in poverty in rudimentary housing, and have low nutritional standards. Poverty is more visible in the rural sector, where life remains little changed from colonial times. A group of a few landowners, who descend in most cases from rich colonial families, have the control of the agricultural economy. While vast extensions of the most productive land are in their hands. The majority of the rural inhabitants (campesinos) owns farms marginal in size and productivity. Opposite to the landowner's style of life,the campesino's living conditions are miserable. Just a few campesinos are capable of producing much beyond the requirement of simple survival. Many years of isolation and subordination have made it impossible for the campesino to act on his own interests. These two humiliating conditions have not only hurt his dignity but have eliminated his hope of recovery. Because of this, the campesino has become more and more indifferent to the nation’s events. The campesino’s apathy with the use of primitive agricultural techniques, and the lack of control upon the means of production are the three main factors responsible for today’s poor productivity in the agrarian sector. This creates a critical problem to the nation, since agriculture is a basic activity upon which depends the operation of important sectors of any country’s economy. In Venezuela, the scares development and poor productivity of the agricultural sector constitute a serious inconvenience which obstruct safe development and compromise the country’s economic stability. Since Venezuela’s economy is highly dependent in oil exportation, petroleum has made the nation’s economy lopsided dangerously dependent upon foreign markets, and extremely sensitive to events abroad. This condition creates the urgent need of improving and developing Venezuela’s agriculture and cattle production. To accomplish a revitalization of agri-business, it will be necessary to improve both the rural environment and the campesino’s living conditions. Cooperativas are suggested here as an economic system capable of providing the means of education and implementation needed in rural Venezuela in order to incorporate the peasant as a dynamic factor of production in the nation’s economy. This envolvement will make possible to accomplish the required socio-economic transformation in the countryside. Organizing and integrating co-operation among campesinos is an efficient way to combat poverty and also to increase productivity so that agriculture in Venezuela becomes as profitable as other business endeavors. This will make life in the agrarian sector more comfortable and attractive and also will tend to make Venezuela’s economy more independent.



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Degree Name


Level of Degree


Department Name

School of Architecture and Planning

First Committee Member (Chair)

Edith Ann Cherry

Second Committee Member

Richard Staab Nordhaus

Third Committee Member

Cruz Reynoso

Included in

Architecture Commons