Rural Economic Revitalization (2007 – 2014)

From 2007-2014, The Monieson Centre sponsored an economic revitalization research theme, investigating new strategies for rural communities to develop vibrant economies. This page documents key resources from research projects and events generated through this research stream.

Key findings from the Centre’s work are available in the McGill-Queen’s Publication, Revitalizing Rural Economies, by Dr. Yolande Chan, Jeffrey Dixon, and Christine R. Dukelow.

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Research Projects

The Research Partnerships to Revitalize Rural Economies project was designed to develop and strengthen partnerships to support academic research for Canada's rural communities. Interdisciplinary research partnerships, cross-sector co-creation of knowledge and understanding, expanded networks for research, and partnered knowledge mobilization are combined to create and disseminate new knowledge on rural economic development. The research team, in close collaboration with the project’s network of over 40 partners, has conducted studies and disseminated knowledge focused on interdisciplinary research themes including rural entrepreneurship, business innovation, and community sustainability.

The Research Partnerships project was funded through the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada (SSHRC) Partnership Development Grant program, as well as significant partner-based funding, including the leadership team (Northumberland County Economic Development, Prince Edward/Lennox & Addington Community Futures Development Corporation (PELA CFDC), Eastern Ontario Wardens’ Caucus, RDÉE-Ontario, Rural Ontario Institute) and the steering committee (Ontario Association of CFDCs, Queen's Sustainable Bioeconomy Centre, and the City of Kawartha Lakes).

Report TitleAuthorDownload
Three Useful Templates for Transportation Dr. Chialin Chen, Smith School of Business English Report Rapport Français
Artful Places Dr. Betsy Donald, Queen's University English Report Rapport Français
Multi-Generation Small Business in Rural Communities Dr. Gordon Hunter, University of Lethbridge English Report Rapport Français
The Employment and Wage Impact of Broadband Deployment in Canada Dr. Olena Ivus, Smith School of Business English Report Rapport Français
Helping Entrepreneurs Succeed Dr. Kelley Packalen, Smith School of Business English Report Rapport Français
Green Economic Initiatives in Southwestern Ontario Challenges and Opportunities Dr. Alison Blay-Palmer, Wilfrid Laurier University English Report Rapport Français
Benchmarking the Creative Economy in Rural Ontario Dr. Kevin Stolarick, The Martin Prosperity Institute English Report Rapport Français
Who Works Where in Peterborough Dr. Kevin Stolarick, The Martin Prosperity Institute English Report Rapport Français
Friend or Foes? The Interrelationship between Angel and Venture Capital Markets Dr. Veikko Thiele, Smith School of Business English Report Rapport Français
Entrepreneurs' Experiences in the Ontario Self-Employment Benefit (OSEB) Program Dr. Ingrid Chadwick, Concordia University and Dr. Jana Raver, Smith School of Business English Report Rapport Français

The Evaluating the Economic and Social Impacts of Rural Broadband Investment in Eastern Ontario project is a two-year research initiative to measure baseline data and short-term impacts of the $200m Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN) infrastructure investment. The project builds on a methodology developed by The Monieson Centre at Queen’s School of Business for the Ontario Ministry of Government Services in 2011.

The Broadband Strategic Research Impact Analysis Project is a research initiative to develop an evaluation methodology to track the social and economic benefits of the Province of Ontario’s investments in broadband services. It recommends qualitative and quantitative methods which can be used to assess the impacts of broadband deployment in rural Eastern Ontario.

The project was led by The Monieson Centre at Smith School of Business, through funding from the Ontario Ministries of Government Services (MGS), and Agriculture Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA). The project also partnered with the Ontario Ministries of Economic Development and Trade (MEDT) and Northern Development, Mines and Forestry (MNDMF), as well as the Eastern Ontario Regional Network (EORN).

This one-year project funding by the Economic Development Council of Ontario (EDCO) produced five original research studies on two key rural economic development themes:

Theme 1: Rural Entrepreneurs & Business

  • Advisor Relationships in Rural Business, Drs. Kelley Packalen & Linda Dyer
  • Venture Capital Financing for Entrepreneurs in Rural Business, Dr. Veikko Thiele
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Theme 2: Innovation & Sustainability in Creative Rural Communities

  • Building Community Capacity through Community Development, Dr. Alison Blay-Palmer
  • Developing a Rural Public Transportation Network, Dr. Chailin Chen
  • Understanding Rural Business Enterprise, Dr. Tina Dacin
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The Impact of Academic Knowledge Mobilization in Rural Economic Development project assesses the impact of academic knowledge mobilization on key gaps and barriers to rural Southern Ontario’s economic development and growth. The project aims to increase rural competitiveness and innovation in two ways. First, by evaluating the local and regional impact of research on rural economic development. Second, by mobilizing effective tools and resources to overcome existing barriers to growth and knowledge gaps.

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A three-year, $300,000 SSHRC-funded project to bolster rural Eastern Ontario’s economy by moving the results of academic research into communities. The project drew together 40 partners including lead collaborators PELA CFDC and the Eastern Ontario CFDC Network, Inc. Case studies, business success story profiles, and reports from community-based Discovery Workshops to identify rural economic development priorities are available here for download.

Discovery Workshops

Community leaders from across Ontario identified economic development priorities and research needs for their regions. Download the reports in English and French.

Report TitleDownload
1000 Islands English Report Rapport Français
Haliburton English Report Rapport Français
Kawartha Lakes English Report Rapport Français
Napanee English Report Rapport Français
Northumberland English Report Rapport Français
Picton English Report Rapport Français
Rockland English Report Rapport Français
Stormont-Dundas-Glengarry English Report Rapport Français
Trenval English Report Rapport Français
Frontenac English Report Rapport Français
Peterborough English Report Rapport Français
Smith Falls English Report Rapport Français
South Lake English Report Rapport Français
Grenville English Report Rapport Français
North Hastings English Report Rapport Français
Renfrew English Report Rapport Français

Knowledge Syntheses

In response to community feedback, The Monieson Centre has developed summaries of leading research on key rural economic development priorities. Download the reports in English and French.

Report TitleDownload
Promoting Skilled Trades English Report Rapport Français
Rural Investment Attraction English Report Rapport Français
Community Branding English Report Rapport Français
Physician Attraction English Report Rapport Français
Broadband English Report Rapport Français
Youth Engagement English Report Rapport Français
Vibrant Downtowns English Report Rapport Français
Community Economic Development I English Report Rapport Français
Community Economic Development II English Report Rapport Français
Tourism I English Report Rapport Français
Tourism II English Report Rapport Français
Asset Inventory English Report Rapport Français
Community Collaboration English Report Rapport Français
Entrepreneurship English Report Rapport Français
Immigration English Report Rapport Français
Value-Added English Report Rapport Français
Creative Economy English Report Rapport Français
Transportation English Report Rapport Français
Local Governance English Report Rapport Français
Retaining Rural Youth English Report Rapport Français

Success Stories

The Monieson Centre has profiled business success stories from across rural Eastern Ontario. Discover the secrets to their success in these case studies.

Report TitleDownload
Algonquin Backpackers English Report Rapport Français
Barley Days English Report Rapport Français
La Gantoise English Report Rapport Français
Ontario Water Buffalo English Report Rapport Français
Fifth Town Artisan Cheese English Report Rapport Français
Frontenac Shores English Report Rapport Français
Green Beaver English Report Rapport Français
Kriska Holdings English Report Rapport Français
L'Auberge de France English Report Rapport Français
OFarrell English Report Rapport Français
Old Tin Shed English Report Rapport Français
Ontario East Wood Centre English Report Rapport Français
Pefferlaw Peat English Report Rapport Français
The Stone Kitchen English Report Rapport Français
Tri Hawk English Report Rapport Français
Whistlestop English Report Rapport Français
Wild Wing English Report Rapport Français
Wolfe Springs English Report Rapport Français

This research brought together researchers from the University of Guelph with researchers from The Monieson Centre at Queen’s University. Key partners also included The Ontario Rural Council (TORC) and the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs (OMAFRA). The research focused on community engagement sessions in Central and South‐western Ontario. It involved 12 community and organization discovery workshops. The results have been integrated with existing research results from Eastern Ontario (through prior consultations led by The Monieson Centre) and Northern Ontario (through the Northern Growth Plan consultations). The research was completed between September 2009 and April 2010.

Discovery Workshop Summary Reports

Report TitleDownload
Alliston English Report Rapport Français
Chatham-Kent English Report Rapport Français
Dunnville English Report Rapport Français
Elora English Report Rapport Français
Hanover English Report Rapport Français
Mitchell English Report Rapport Français
Orillia English Report Rapport Français

Funded by the Kingston Economic Development Corporation (KEDCO), The Monieson Centre worked to determine challenges that exist in connecting students with Kingston, identify, from a student's perspective, the challenges that exist in hiring Queen's graduates, and determine key factors that influence the retention of students in Kingston.

A memorandum of understanding with the Prince Edward and Lennox and Addington CFDC served as a catalyst for research which promotes community economic growth, business development, and entrepreneurship. In addition to fostering over $2m of further work from 2008-2014, the collaboration produced four research reports:

  • Capitalizing on connections: PELA and beyond, Dr. Alison Blay-Palmer and Mike Dwyer
  • Growing The Creative-Rural Economy in Prince Edward County: Strategies For Innovative, Creative and Sustainable Development, Dr. Betsy Donald
  • Recruitment and Retention of Medical Doctors, Dr. M. Gordon Hunter
  • Ruth Wilson Report


April 8, 2014

  • Opening Comments, Dr. Yolande Chan PDFVideo
  • Opening Keynote: The Rural Imperative, Dr. Norm Jacknis PDFVideo
  • Deployment Stimulate Rural and Regional Development, Dr. Helen Hambly Odame, Dr. Laxmi Pant and Cam Mathers PDFVideo
  • The Employment and Wage Impact of Broadband Deployment in Canada, Dr. Olena Ivus and Lisa Severson PDF, Video
  • Eastern Ontario Regional Network, Lisa Severson Panel PDF
  • Panel: Linking Human Capital and Technology, Craig Desjardins, David Fell and Ray D. Bollman Video
  • David Fell PDF
  • Ray D. Bollman PDF, Video
  • Partner-Based Research: Jacques Rigby Critchley PDF, Video
  • Helping Entrepreneurs Succeed: Advisory Relationships in Government-funded Programs, Dr. Kelley Packalen and Alison Lobb PDF
  • Huron SBEC, Alison Lobb PDF
  • Driving Economic Growth through Rural Culture and Heritage, Derin Kent and Peter Lockyer
  • History Lives Here Inc, Peter Lockyer Video
  • Cultural Resources as a Tool for Economic Development, Tina Dacin, Peter Dacin, and Derin Kent PDF
  • Closing Keynote: Stronger Economies Together, Dr. Lionel “Bo” J. Beaulieu PDF

April 8, 2013

  • Fostering Innovation through Academic-Community Partnerships, Dr. Yolande Chan and Jeff Dixon PDF, Video
  • The Creative Economy in Ontario Rural Communities, Dr. Kevin Stolarick PDF, Video
  • Financing Rural Ventures, Dr. Veikko Thiele Video
  • Nurturing Resilient Entrepreneurs, Ingrid Chadwick Video
  • Integrating Immigrants into Rural Labour Markets, Dr. Leela Viswanathan Video

April 11, 2012

  • Research Partnerships Project Overview, Dr. Scott Carson, Director, The Monieson Centre PDF, Video
  • Building Sustainable Economies: Dr. Alison Blay Palmer, Murli Gogula, and Dr. Yafan Huang PDF, Video
  • Arts Networks and the Rural Creative Economy: Dr. Betsy Donald, Andrea Gori & Annie Wang, and Arnie Francis PDF, Video
  • Keynote Address: Dr. Mark Roseland PDF, Video
  • Fostering Business Innovation & Incubation: Wren Montgomery, Ram Kalkar PDF, Video
  • Discussion Panel: Building Policy to Foster Rural Economic Sustainability: Paul Parker, Chris Fullterton, Karla Uliana and Norm Ragetlie PDF

December 3-4, 2012

  • Keynote Address: The Internet & Firm Innovation, Chris Forman PDF, Video
  • Eastern Ontario: A Case Study in Regional Approaches to Rural Broadband Investment, David Fell, Jim Pine, Lisa Severson, EORN, Dr. Helen Hambly Odame, Kathy Wood, Dr. Olena Ivus, Dr. Catherine Middleton PDF, Video
  • Broadband Network Performance in Canadian Provinces: 2007-2011, Dr. Reza Rajabiun PDF, Video
  • The Alberta SuperNet: A Next Generation Network between Public and Private Sectors, Dr. Adam Fiser PDF, Video
  • How Women in Remote and Rural First Nation Communities Are Using Information and Communication Technologies, Penny Carpenter
  • Broadband in Rural Scotland - Challenges for Scotland and Lessons for Other Countries, Dr. Jason Whalley, University of Strathclyde PDF, Video
  • Beyond Infrastructure: Broadband for Development in Remote and Indigenous Regions, Dr. Heather Hudson PDF, Video
  • Disrupting Policy with Vision and Action to Deliver Broadband to Under-served Rural Communities – A Manitoba Case Study, Dr. Bill Ashton PDF, Video
  • The New Telecommunications Sector Foreign Investment Regime and Rural Broadband, Dr. Samuel Trosow PDF, Video
  • Panel: Reflections from Industry & Government, Paul Downs, Dave Chiswell, Bill Macdonald, Martin Bohl PDF

November 19, 2010

  • Rural Revival or Requiem? Establishing New Creative Ventures in a Rural Context, Dr. Elspeth Murray PDF, Video
  • From Cars to Creativity: The Changing Dynamics of the Rural Economy in Essex County, Ontario, Dr. Tara Vinodrai and Nirvana Micoo PDF, Video
  • Creativity, Tourism and Economic Development in a Rural Context: The Case of Prince Edward County, Dr. Kevin Stolarick, Dr. Mark Densted, Dr. Greg Spencer, and Dr. Betsy Donald, Queen’s University PDF, Video
  • Overcoming Creative Disadvantage in Rural Areas with Networked Economic Development Strategies, Dr. Greg Spencer PDF, Video
  • Incubating Business Enterprises in Rural Communities, Dr. Tina Dacin and Wren Montgomery PDF, Video
  • The Broadband Backbone of the Creative Economy in Rural Southern Ontario, Dr. Helen Hambly Odame and Dr. Laxmi Pant PDF, Video
  • Achieving “Cluster Consciousness”: The Challenges of Defining and Nurturing a Cultural Cluster in a Rural Region, Dr. Ivan Emke PDF, Video
  • Cape Breton’s Celtic Colours International Festival: Building Social and Economic Capital Island‐Wide through a Cultural Social Enterprise Initiative, Dr. Jacquelyn Scott Video
  • Supporting the Creative Economy in Rural Nova Scotia, Dr. Ted Cavanagh PDF, Video
  • Competition among Venture Capitalists for Creative, Entrepreneurial Ideas, Dr. Veikko Thiele, Dr. Jose M. Plehn‐Dujowich, and Dr. Kostantinos Serfes PDF, Video

Winter 2010

  • January 26 - The Creative Economy: Fact & Fiction Video
  • Feb. 16 - The Rural Creative Economy: Issues & Challenges Video
  • March 23 - The Creative Economy in Ontario: A Prince Edward County Case Example Video
  • April 27 - The Creative Economy: Rural Policy Implications Video
  • May 25 - The Rural Creative Economy: Agenda for Research Video
  • Economic Development Research in Rural Eastern Ontario – Past, Present & Future, Dr. Yolande Chan, Mr. Jeff Dixon PDF, Video
  • Building Rural Transportation, Mr. Kevin Majkut, Ms. Amy Fan & Mr. Nick Milinkovich, Mr. David Townsend, Dr. Chialin Chen Video
  • Mr. Kevin Kakjut PDF
  • Mr. Nick Milinkovich PDF
  • Mr. David Townsend PDF
  • Dr. Chialin Chen PDF
  • Expanding Social Enterprise, Ms. Dina Ali & Ms. Kate Jaczko, Mr. Gord MacDonald, Ms. Debbie MacDonald Moynes, Dr. Wenjue Knutsen Video
  • Ms. Kate Jaczko PDF
  • MacDonald - Community Care PDF
  • Dr. Wenjue Knutsen PDF
  • Symposium: Sustainable Economic Development through Entrepreneurship, Mr. Martin Bohl PDF
  • Natural Resources-Based Entrepreneurship Profile - Deslaurier Custom Cabinets, Mr. Aneesh Datta, Mr. Denis Staples, Ms. Diane McKinnon, Dr. Warren Mabee Video
  • Dr. Warren Mabee PDF
  • Mr. Aneesh Datta
  • Manufacturing Entrepreneurship Profile - GT Machining, Mr. Chris Sinkinson & Mr. Sufian Mughal, Mr. Darrell Carnegie, Mr. Stephen Paul, Ms. Sandra Olszowka Video
  • Mr. Chris Sinkinson PDF
  • Mr. Darrell Carnegie PDF
  • Ms. Sandra Olszowka PDF
  • Panel Discussion: "Rural Eastern Ontario - Building a New Generation of Entrepreneurs" Video
  • Mr. Dan Borowec, Mr. David Fell, Mr. David Hatch & Ms. Stacey Hatch, Dr. Kelley Packalen, Ms. Darcelle Runciman
  • Dr. Kelley Packalen PDF
  • Mr. Dan Borowec PDF
  • Mr. David Hatch & Ms. Stacey Hatch PDF
  • Ms. Marcelle Runciman PDF
  • Closing Remarks, Dr. Yolande Chan PDF

April 23, 2010

  • The Impact of Research on Rural Communities, Mr. Craig Desjardins, Mr. Rob Black PDF
  • Southern Ontario Research Priorities: Lessons Learned & Results from 24 Community Workshops, Dr. Yolande Chan, Mr. Jeff Dixon PDF
  • Community Consulting Report - Levac Apiaries/ Glengarry Beehive, Phillip Hutton & Netasha Krishan, Mark & Joanne Lauterbach, Dr. Alison Blay - Palmer
  • Philip Hutton PDF
  • Dr. Alison Blay PDF
  • Eastern Ontario Business Success Story – Ontario East Wood Centre, Stella Cheung & David Kwon, Sandra Lawn, Dr. Goce Andrevski 
  • Dr. Goce Andrevski PDF
  • Sandra Lawn PDF
  • Best Small & Medium Employers Survey Results, Ms. Sandra Olszowka, Mr. Rob Wellstood PDF
  • Keynote Address: “The Determinants of Tourism Destination Competitiveness and Success”, Dr. Brent Ritchie PDF
  • Enhancing Community Competitiveness with KIS Resources, Mr. Jeff Dixon, Ms. Heather Hall PDF, Video
  • Tourism in Ontario, Michael Kurts PDF
  • Comments, MP Gord Brown 
  • Panel Discussion: “Distinguished Communities: Creating a Local Competitive Advantage”, Dr. Scott Carson, Mr. Craig Desjardins, Ms. Lauren Millier, Dr. J.R. Brent Ritchie, Mr. Brian Ritchie Video
  • Dr. Scott Carson PDF
  • Ms. Lauren Millier PDF
  • The Value of Social Sciences and Humanities Research: New Horizons for SSHRC, Dr. Gisèle Yasmeen PDF

April 8, 2009

  • KIS Project Overview – Mr. Jeff Dixon PDF, Video
  • Eastern Ontario Success Stories – Mr. Gary Bissonette, Ms. Petra Cooper, Mr. Matthew Derbyshire PDF, Video
  • Best Small and Medium Enterprise Survey Results – Ms. Sandra Olszowka PDF, Video
  • Keynote Presentation: “Creating a Cultural, Economic, and Environmental Community Inventory” – Dr. Robert MacKinnon PDF, Video
  • Discovery Workshop Testimonials – Ms. Heather Lawless, Ms. Diane McKinnon PDF, Video
  • Knowledge Syntheses Presentation – Mr. Martin Pyle PDF, Video
  • Consulting Reports – Mr. Robert Woyzbun, Mr. Wil Hedican, Ms. Laura Wynne PDF, Video
  • Creative Communities Blog Report – Dr. Betsy Donald, Ms. Heather Hall, Ms. Clare Wastenays PDF, Video

May 21-23, 2008

  • The New Rural Economy – Charles Fluharty, Dr. Bill Reimer, Lee Munnich
  • Charles Fluharty PDF
  • Dr. Bill Reimer PDF
  • Lee Munnich PDF
  • Social Capital – Judith Baril, Andrew Redden, Brian Stratton
  • Judith Baril PDF
  • Andrew Redden PDF
  • Brian Stratton PDF
  • Innovation and Vitality - Keynote Address – Ken Knox PDF
  • Innovation in Eastern Ontario and Beyond – Dr. Mary Robertson, Andy Mitchell, Mark Saunders, Dr. J.C. Spender
  • Dr. Mary Robertson PDF
  • Mark Saunders PDF
  • Competitive Rural Regions – Kaia Miller PDF
  • "Wit With Wisdom” – Deborah Kimmett
  • Linkages - From Research to Community – Dr. Robert Annis
  • The Infrastructure of Rural Vitality – Kathryn Wood, Jim Whaley, Chris Cope
  • Kathyrn Wood PDF
  • Jim Whaley PDF
  • Chris Cope PDF
  • New Directions for Rural Vitality – Dr. Michael Best