STAPLES — The Aspen Institute Community Strategies Group (CSG) interviewed staff at Region Five Development Commission (R5DC) as part of their research that identified “Rural Development Hub” intermediaries as effective community and economic development partners in rural America.
CSG has now published the final report of this research, with support from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.
The report, titled “Rural Development Hubs: Strengthening America’s Rural Innovation Infrastructure,” offers value and insight for the entire country. It focuses on the role — and aggregates the wisdom — of a set of intermediaries, like R5DC who are doing economic and community development differently in rural America. Rural Development Hubs are main players advancing an asset-based and inclusive wealth-building approach to rural community and economic development in this country. The recommendations that emerged from CSG’s Hub interviews can help investors, policymakers and other decision-makers who have questions about rural America.
“Our organization has been fortunate to learn and grow beside some of the nation’s best economic and community development practitioners,” said R5DC’s Executive Director Cheryal Hills. “In this report we are classified as a ‘Unicorn Regional Organization’ which is fitting given that we are quite unique as a unit of government who also staffs a 501(c)(3) non-profit organization, both committed to regional prosperity for ALL people. The CSG’s report has been the first to accurately record this complex mix and the rural relevancy.”