Speak Your Piece | How Outdoor Recreation Supports Rural Economic Development

Tuesday, October 01, 2019

Investing in outdoor recreation is one of several strategies that can help rural communities thrive in a changing economy.

Counties with outdoor recreation economies are more likely to attract new residents with greater wealth and have faster-growing wages than their non-recreation counterparts. These trends are particularly true in rural communities.

These findings come as the economic headwinds facing rural communities gain more attention nationally, including the concentration of jobs in big cities and increasing productivity (meaning lower employment per dollar of goods produced) of industries like manufacturing.

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