Rural People, Rural Policy

Rural People, Rural Policy

IEI was one of four organizations to receive grant funding from the W.K. Kellogg Foundation to complete the final three years (2010-2013) of a groundbreaking initiative to bring new voices to rural policymaking at the local, state, tribal and national levels.

The Rural People, Rural Policy initiative brought together as many as 500 highly connected and remarkably diverse rural organizations, linked together as a “network of networks.” Individually and collectively, they shared a common goal of promoting policy changes that improve the well being of rural children, families and their communities.

Through a specially designed Internet communication and social networking platform, organizations engaged in shared learning and mobilize for policy changes to benefit rural children and families.

The project was managed by a partnership of four organizations: IEI, the Center for Rural Strategies (KY and TN), Network Impact (MI and MA), and MDC, Inc (NC). Working with its partners, IEI provided research and technical assistance related to the policy making process, identification of emerging policy opportunities, stakeholder identification and recruitment, and design of action plans.

Click here for a list of organizations involved in the Rural Assembly and Rural Policy Networks.

Effective responses to boost long-term competitiveness required targeted and sustained investments of public and private resources over time. Our current systems of public finance at the state and local levels are outdated and ill-suited to meeting these needs. A system that allocates adequate resources to high priority areas–despite the inevitable ups and downs of the economic cycle–is crucial.