Great Lakes RCAP recently partnered on a newly released book, Investing in Rural Prosperity. Our own Deb Martin, the Program Development Coordinator for RCAP, contributor her expertise in the chapter: Fostering a Culture of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Rural Communities.
Many vulnerable rural communities across the country ar still striving to fully recover from the Great Recession when the COVID-19 pandemic struck. The pandemic hit many rural communities particularly hard from low-wage meatpacking workers in the Midwest to Native communities in the Southwest, and from African Americans in the Southeast to immigrant farmworkers in the West.
Recognizing the precarious situation many of these communities faced before the pandemic, and the tough work they have ahead of them in recovery, the Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis, in collaboration with the Federal Reserve Board, has published Investing in Rural Prosperity, an edited book proposing a framework for advancing shared economic prosperity in rural communities across the United States.
In Deb Martin’s chapter Fostering a Culture of Entrepreneurship and Innovation in Rural Communities, she outlines the Entrepreneurial Communities Initiative (ECI) of the Great Lakes Community Action Partnership (GLCAP). GLCAP kicked off the ECI in 2016 with funding from USDA’s Rural Community Development Initiative program. She describes the types of communities that they chose to target (those with populations under 20,000), and the major components of the program. Deb also outlines the various strategies they implement to connect communities with other resources and training opportunities, and the ways that Great Lakes RCAP measure success.
Investing in Rural Prosperity is authored by 79 people from 28 states representing every region of the country. The authors work at financial institutions, foundations, government agencies, nonprofits, and in academia. It was published on Tuesday, November 16. The book is freely available to the public both electronically and in hard copy at www.stlouisfed.org/investinrural.