The study wasn't restricted to the U.S. It found that rural regions generally had faster growth than urban places from 1995 to 2007. That finding should make rural places a critical part of larger economic development, U.S. Department of Agriculture rural development undersecretary Doug O'Brien said while presenting the report to the National Association of Counties. The results "run counter to the conventional wisdom that urbanization is good for all countries," said Jose Enrique Garcilazo, O'Brien's co-presenter and OECD regional development policy director.
In fact, Garcilazo said that "there's something happening in cities to make them more inefficient" because "putting all the eggs in one basket is not good." Exurbs, places in metropolitan areas that are mostly rural in character, saw the most growth of all regions studied, Agri-Pulse notes. The report suggests specific approaches to policy that are fruitful for rural regions, including upgrading the low- skills human capital in local labor pools. The study also says that subsidies without incentives are ineffective in stimulating growth. Above all, the report noted that "successful rural regions come from cooperation and conversation between various rural stakeholders," Agri-Pulse reports.
Agri-Pulse is available by subscription only, but a free trial can be found here.