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Rural Development Innovation Center

Share your ideas to improve program delivery in your town.

What can USDA do differently to serve your rural community?

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Secretary Perdue created the Rural Development Innovation Center to identify and develop new tools to better serve rural communities in achieving prosperity.

The Innovation Center is hard-wired into USDA’s structure with a mission to identify best practices and bring continuous improvement in program delivery to enhance the quality of life in rural communities. The Center works to transform rural communities through strategic partnerships, data analytics, regulations management and enterprise risk management.

This forum was created for you – our rural customer. Please join the conversation and share your ideas about effective actions that will make rural communities stronger.

Tools for Innovation

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Rural Economic Development Innovation (REDI)

The Rural Economic Development Innovation (REDI) initiative provides free technical assistance for up to two years to help rural towns and regions create and implement economic development plans. USDA’s Innovation Center created the REDI initiative to support recommendations identified in the Report to the President of the United States from the Task Force on Agriculture and Rural Prosperity. The recommendations outline steps to develop the rural economy and support quality of life.

In June 2019, USDA and its partners selected 47 rural communities and regions (PDF, 141 KB) on a competitive basis to receive planning assistance from one of the four partner organizations. The partners are the National Association of Counties Research Foundation, the Rural Community Assistance Partnership, McClure Engineering Company, and Purdue University Extension & Community Economic Development Initiative of Kentucky.

To learn more about this opportunity, download the REDI Fact Sheet (PDF, 123 KB).

The e-Connectivity @ USDA cover with text: Now Available: USDA Broadband Resource Guide for Rural America

e-Connectivity Toolkit: Broadband Resource Guide

The e-Connectivity Toolkit (PDF, 4.3 MB) features 27 USDA programs that support broadband deployment. Each program is organized by customer and project type to help users identify resources that support planning, construction, research and other e-Connectivity projects. Resources are available from: Rural Development, National Institute of Food and Agriculture, Farm Service Agency, Natural Resources Conservation Service, and Forest Service.

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OneRD Guaranteed Loan Rule

To improve agency efficiency in program delivery, customer service and program utilization, the Innovation Center is working to streamline and consolidate four Rural Development loan guarantee regulations into a single regulation. Learn more about the OneRD Guaranteed Loan rule.

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Best Practices

The Innovation Center supports a forward-focused agency that is able to supply local leaders with new and fresh solutions. One method the Center uses to accomplish this goal is to identify best practices that highlight new approaches in program delivery to be replicated in communities throughout rural America.

Three best practices that can be replicated in your town:

 
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Reflecting on One Year of Innovation at Rural Development

Assistant to the Secretary for Rural Development Anne Hazlett shares a few reflections on a year of transformation in the agency through innovation.

 
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Technical Assistance Makes USDA’s Water Infrastructure Application Process Easier

Technical assistance providers can help your community better understand the USDA application process from start to finish.

 
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Critical Infrastructure Supports Next Generation of Tribal Leaders in Central Oregon

Every child born in the Warm Springs Reservation will benefit from e-Connectivity access, a high-quality education and expanded opportunity.

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In the News

Innovation at Rural Development

Rural Economic Development and Planning

High Speed Broadband e-Connectivity

Regulatory Reform

Rural Workforce Development

Tribal News