ERIC Number: ED453011
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2000-Dec
Reference Count: N/A
How Rural America Sees Its Future. The Main Street Economist: Commentary on the Rural Economy.
Barkema, Alan D.; Drabenstott, Mark
To gain a perspective on rural America's future, seven roundtables consisting of seven rural stakeholder groups were convened. Four groups of challenges facing rural areas emerged. The rural business environment was considered the source of greatest challenge. Agriculture concerns included low profits and access to world markets. The effects of increasing consolidation, and a lack of diversity were concerns within agriculture and across the rural business spectrum, as were the roles of government regulations and tax policies. Challenges of community included a shrinking rural population and its related effects on tax bases, provision of services, the quantity and quality of available human capital and leadership skills, persistent poverty, and limited rural experience in business and economic development. Challenges associated with place ranked third. Mobilizing rural residents, getting exposure to policymakers, maintaining existing infrastructures, and building a new telecommunications infrastructure are limited by remoteness. Particular financial concerns included limited access to capital and the loss of local control that accompanies the takeover of local banks. Policy recommendations included implementing a rural-friendly approach in new and existing policies, improving support for rural businesses, strengthening rural infrastructure, increasing regional cooperation, and making more capital available. Rural strengths were identified as a sense of community, rural quality of life and landscape, and faith in rural entrepreneurs. (TD)
Descriptors: Agriculture, Capital, Community Control, Community Problems, Economic Development, Futures (of Society), Human Capital, Internet, Population Trends, Public Policy, Quality of Life, Rural Areas, Rural Development, Rural Urban Differences
For full text: http://www.kc.frb.org/RuralCenter/mainstreet/MainSt2000.htm.
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, MO. Center for the Study of Rural America.