Understanding and supporting the development of community-driven approaches to developing healthy and sustainable rural economies.

Pathways to Prosperity is an applied research and extension project that focuses on how communities can collaboratively develop
local food processing facilities, branding and marketing campaigns, and other value-added agriculture strategies aimed at improving
the profitability and economic viability of local farms and ranches.

It connects rigorous research with extension outreach to support the development of effective, collaborative approaches to
strengthening the value-added food and agricultural sector in rural communities by developing their unique resources and amenities.

Rural Issues and

Rural America has yet to fully realize the benefits of economic growth and still struggles in the midst of a healthy US economy. Pathways to Prosperity seeks to reverse these trends through investing in these communities.

A Focus On
Collaborative Pathways

Collaborative approaches to leveraging rural resources is what we term the “pathway to prosperity.” Within this perspective are four foundational assertions that leverage a community’s resources and values.

Project Research
and Outreach

Pathways to Prosperity combines research at both the local community and national levels. Extension and policy outreach help to identify, verify, and disseminate effective and collaborative approaches to value-added sector development.

National Assets Database

The first task of the Pathways project is to develop databases of measures for all assets that make up a community’s wealth and measures of the local value-add sector for every county in the U.S. using existing, publicly available information. These databases are made public so that other researchers and communities can use them to further advance this work.

Resources and Publications

The Pathways to Prosperity project has developed a multitude of resources and publications available to support your research or community efforts in strengthening the development of healthy rural economies.

Contact Us

Questions about Pathways to Prosperity, have ideas or recommendations, or want to know how you can contribute or get involved? We would love to hear from you!

Or Snail Mail at: Pathways to Prosperity | 310C Page Hall | 1810 College Road North | Columbus, OH 43210

This work is supported by Innovation for Rural Entrepreneurs and Communities Program (grant no. 2019-68006-29681) from the USDA National Institute of Food and Agriculture.
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