Great Plains Studies, Center for


Date of this Version

Spring 2005


Published in Great Plains Research Vol. 15, No. 1, 2005. Copyright © 2005 The Center for Great Plains Studies, University of Nebraska–Lincoln. Used by permission.


The purpose of this study was to examine the local socioeconomic impacts of new economic development initiatives in North Dakota’s rural (nonmetropolitan) communities. The analysis utilized interview, survey, and secondary data from four communities with recently developed agricultural processing plants, three with manufacturing and/or explored services facilities, and two control communities (i.e., towns that had not experienced the advent of a major new employer during the 1990s). Information from the two groups of development communities and the control communities is compared and contrasted to discern similarities and differences in the effects of the different types of development initiatives and to develop a set of general principles and recommended actions for community leaders to follow when planning for a new employer.