For those interested in place-based planning, the “rural-proofing” policy domain and the general challenges of rural and remote communities, a good piece by The Centre for Rural Economy at Newcastle University [ @cretweeting ] was published recently [July 2017] entitled Helping Businesses Thrive in Peripheral Rural Towns. Authored by Neil Powe and Rhona Pringle.
Although focussed on the challenges in the United Kingdom and integration with their particular industrial strategies [I note that they have explicit strategies!] there are many lessons and insights applicable to all rural or “peripheral” towns. The policy recommendations would, I have no doubt, resonate with many in Australia.
The reference section alone is an extremely valuable resource for those working in place-based policy and the rural/regional/business/industry sectors.
From the paper:
This is a report about business-led growth and its role within place-based revival. The report explores these issues by considering peripheral rural towns which are defined here as small towns distant rather than accessible to large urban areas. The towns considered within this report are between 2,000 and 12,000 in population.
This research aims to investigate whether businesses can thrive in peripheral rural towns and, if so, the conditions needed for businesses to thrive in these locations. Whilst there has been much research into the potential for growth in rural areas, there has been a lack of focus on specific places and the challenges they face. Many studies have considered ―rural‖ or sub- sectors of ―rural‖ such as ―peripheral rural‖ as generic categories whose economic prospects are assessed with little consideration of the outcomes within specific contexts. The opportunities arising will vary considerably between specific places and depend on a range of specific factors which would be difficult to assess or judge generically from national statistics.