Part of the remit of the HRSG is to identify priorities and encourage action that will enhance our understanding of historic rural settlement remains in Scotland. The Group encourages an inter-disciplinary approach, including historical, archaeological, palaeoenvironmental and architectural interests. Periodically, the Group organises events to promote research in the subject and to discuss the future of historic rural settlement studies.
The first attempt to define research priorities in the subject took place in 1995, when Glasgow University Archaeological Research Division (GUARD) produced a document for Historic Scotland containing recommendations towards a policy statement for the subject. This document was based upon a process of consultation.
In part to follow up on this 1995 document, the MoLRS Working Group (now the HRSG) organised a day workshop at the National Trust for Scotland offices in Charlotte Square, Edinburgh, in May 2003. At the workshop, research issues were debated alongside other aspects of the subject falling within the remit of the Group. HRSG 2003 workshop .
A second workshop, dedicated specifically to the subject of research, was held on 7 March 2007, also at the National Trust for Scotland offices in Charlotte Square. For an account of the workshop, HRSG 2007 minutes .
The HRSG is currently working on a research framework for the subject, Version 1 of which can be downloaded by clicking HRSG draft framework . The final version of the document will be uploaded to this page in the near future.