Blueprint for the Rural South: Discovering New Ideas, Applying New Strategies
The Southern Rural Development Center's strategic plan was undertaken with support from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. This important document, titled Blueprint for the Rural South: Discovering New Ideas, Applying New Strategies, represents the culmination of a process that began over a year ago. Land-grant faculty from across the South worked hand-in-hand with us in capturing the views of nearly 600 Southerners. These important insights were studied, discussed and carefully weighed by our faculty-based advisory committee and our SRDC Board of Directors. The plan calls for investments in three new priorities.
Strengthening Our Nation's Food Assistance ProgramsRIDGE Program: Research Innovation and Development Grants in Economics
This report highlights important and practical contributions made by RIDGE researchers through studies that have focused on providing access to healthy foods at affordable prices, improving nutrition to build a healthy workforce, and responding to diverse needs. Funded by the USDA’s Economic Research Service, the Research Innovation and Development Grants in Economics Program provides research that informs program administrators, policymakers and analysts.
The Voices of the People: Strategies for Expanding Entrepreneurship in the Rural South
The Southern Rural Development Center, in partnership with its fellow Regional Rural Development Centers and the National Coalition for Rural Entrepreneurship, conducted nine listening sessions around the South to gain insight into the state of entrepreneurship in rural communities and to better understand which policies and programs can help foster entrepreneurship in these areas. This report, "The Voices of the People: Strategies for Expanding Entrepreneurship in the Rural South," highlights key needs outlined by rural people, organizations and community representatives taking part in the Southern region listening sessions held in Fall 2005. From their perspective, the findings represent a core set of activities that must be launched if rural communities in the South are to be successful in creating an environment where entrepreneurship is promoted, nurtured and sustained over the long term.
The Role of Education: Promoting the Economic and Social Vitality of Rural America
This special report released by the Southern Rural Development Center offers insight into the important and often fragile relationship between rural schools and communities in America. The Role of Education: Promoting the Economic and Social Vitality of Rural America, a 72-page full-color publication, is the result of more than three years of research conducted in partnership by the SRDC, the USDA Economic Research Service and the Rural School and Community Trust.
Creating Vibrant Communities & Economies in Rural AmericaLionel J. Beaulieu, Southern Rural Development Center
This article seeks to paint a realistic picture of what is happening in rural America today and attempts to offer some options for contributing to its economic and social advancement in the years ahead. We argue that a vibrant rural America will depend, in part, on four major elements: (1) expanding the quality of its human capital resources; (2) building an entrepreneurial spirit that supports internal economic development opportunities; (3) enhancing the digital capacity of rural places so they can be players in an increasingly technology-dependent economy; and (4) promoting broad-based involvement of local individuals in the civic life of their communities.