Suzanne Anarde, outgoing vice president and director of Rural LISC, writes in an essay for Shelterforce stating to look at the impact of investing in rural community development on its own terms.
According to Anarde, the demand for big projects promising big-figure results is a litmus test built around an urban context. It's one that rural communities can never pass. This determined focus on absolute size of outcomes fails to understand what impact looks like in rural places and what she call the "ripple" effect.
Anarde address the investment gap, adding that rural investments should be much more than an afterthought to the community and economic development work underway in urban neighborhoods around the country. She pursues that this is not a "takeaway" game for urban, but rather viewing rural as an added value proposition for investors.
Anarde discusses that private philanthropy also tends to marginalize rural places; rural communities have a different nature; and her call for a new scholarship of rural America. Read the Entire Article
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Morgan Simon, Pi Investments and Transform Finance, explains the concept of impact investment that supports economic and community development. Simon notes that this concept, while gaining attention from varying financial contenders, is an exciting, but potentially problematic trend seen over the last decade.