A glance at the map of Europe's most populous country shows that Germany's 82 million inhabitants live in a multitude of different towns and communities.
The classic rural population that lives permanently on the land is more of an exception in Germany. Nowadays, rural life is often found in the surrounding region or within reach of large cities, where about 40 percent of all the jobs are located. Many communities in big city catchment areas have developed dynamically, says a study on rural life (Landleben - Landlust?) by the Federal Institute for Research on Building, Urban Affairs and Spatial Development (BBSR). The report concludes that country life is more often associated with family life in privately owned homes, and that mobility usually requires a car. Yet rural areas also differ greatly: villages close to large cities are unlike those in more remote areas, since the social structure of their population is different.
Read the full article at http://www.germany.info/Vertretung/usa/en/__pr/GIC/2011/01/05__Live__PM.html