Sustainable rural development in the Uplands of the Lao Peoples Democratic Republic (Lao PDR) has been extremely challenging for farming communities. While government agricultural policy aims to reduce the production of upland rice, communities struggle to develop sustainable alternative livelihoods. This book has examined upland agricultural production systems and ponders whether sustainable outcomes are achievable for these resource poor, marginalised communities. The effect of land and forest allocation policies and the implementation of swidden cultivation stabilisation measures by government and international development agencies have been explored. The book contributes to the theory of intensification of land use, as low population densities and farmers'' risk aversion are propelling diversification rather than intended intensification strategies. Land use policies are contributing to farmers'' inability to create sustainable livelihoods for themselves or for future generations. The analysis will be especially useful to international development professionals and researchers and students.