Persistent narratives of population loss and poverty have shaped the stereotype of rural America as decaying communities rooted in decline for decades. This dominant narrative evokes powerful charitable emotions that stimulate billions of dollars in anti-poverty investments to support their survival. Unfortunately, these critical investments come at the expense of rural America’s identity, which is now mired in a thick narrative of disempowerment and urban dependence. This portrayal underappreciates the durability and ingenuity of these communities.
On June 15, Governance Studies at Brookings will host practitioners from diverse rural minority communities to explore ways to reverse the paradox of rural disempowerment and investment and expand the narrative about the places that 46 million Americans call home. Panelists will discuss policy solutions to enable economic growth in these poorly understood communities.
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