Growth Strategies for Rural Communities: a Preliminary Investigation
Rural planners and development officers are often looking for ways to sustain and grow population. What growth strategies and assets are tools for rural population growth? While there are many self-directed guides suggesting different growth strategies and a large literature on assets and capitals, there is no research comparing the growth strategies and assets used by rural municipalities with growing and declining populations. Past growth strategies used by rural specialists were identified from a number of self-directed guides and six municipalities were identified for the study: three municipalities with stable or growing populations and three municipalities with declining populations. Interviews with key informants from each municipality were used to identify growth initiatives which were then categorized into eight growth strategies and seven capitals. The research shows that growing and declining municipalities use similar assets to implement different growth strategies.