Main streets of tomorrow: growing and financing rural entrepreneurs

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Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, Center for the Study of Rural America, 2003 - Business & Economics - 146 pages
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Rural America is on the frontier of a new economy. Entrepreneurs are crucial to claiming that frontier, as enormous changes sweep through other traditional rural industries like agriculture and manufacturing. While rural America has a long and proud heritage of entrepreneurship, its future is not guaranteed. Economic development in rural places often has depended on a host of subsidies. The huge sums that are spent on industrial recruitment are but one example of how current policies overlook entrepreneurs. How can public policy help make rural America a more entrepreneurial place? What steps are needed to spur new businesses and then nurture them into strong, growing companies? Main Streets of Tomorrow: Growing and Financing Rural Entrepreneurs brought together rural leaders and experts from throughout the nation to answer these questions. The conference was hosted by the Bank's Center for the Study of Rural America in Kansas City on April 28-29, 2003. Conference participants agreed that entrepreneurship is the new focal point for rural development. While programs aimed at business innovation are neither easy nor a quick fix, they do hold great promise in helping rural regions unlock new economic potential. We trust that these proceedings will help to inform the unfolding dialogue on growing more businesses on Main Street. Thomas M. Hoenig President and Chief Executive Officer Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City

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Contents

Preface
1
Growing Rural Entrepreneurs Recent Lessons Learned
39
Policy Options for Growing and Financing Rural Entrepreneurs
77

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