December 05, 2020

Rural Resurgence on Competitive Wisconsin’s short list of BE BOLD strategic necessities

…competitive long-term employment opportunities and rural quality of life seen as critical pathways to talent and capital attraction

Most of the existing efforts to address rural economic problems are focused on those sectors of the rural economy facing serious challenges, including agriculture, health care, education, public services, and infrastructure. These initiatives are obviously important. They should be maintained and, in many cases, need to be expanded. They are not, however, sufficient alone to the task of constructing a healthy rural economy. Efforts to improve rural capacity and life, must also include a serious commitment to identifying and developing new ways to grow the population and the economy.

With invaluable input from the Wisconsin Counties Association; the Cooperative Network; the Wisconsin Dairy Business Association; Rural Wisconsin Hospital Cooperative; the Rural Wisconsin Partners; the Wisconsin REALTORS Association; Seneca Foods; and others, CWI is working to identify issues and approaches that would effectively and productively focus the Action Accelerator process on realistic, achievable options for achieving specified objectives.  To these ends,  CWI has identified four areas of urgent need and opportunity, including:

  • People - A resurgence of communities, economies and prospects can only happen if we can bring people back to rural areas. They won’t come if there aren’t good jobs, interesting communities and broadband.
  • Competitive operational capacity access to Broadband - Recognition of the essential importance of broadband access suggests that a new business model for rural broadband is needed - one structured around the broader value of access rather than that based on narrower provider customer head counts.
  • Employment-based opportunities -  Almost all rural areas have potential advantages that could serve as the starting point for the development of a jobs-employment driven resurgence. Success depends on linking these advantages to activities that attract investors, customers and workers.
  • Enhanced ability to quantify and monetize value - Recent research and trends suggest that its time to take a hard look at whether or not the standard assumptions being used to calculate, the value and identify potential revenue streams.
Last modified on Monday, 26 October 2020 18:30
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