Oct 25, 2023 - Oct 26, 2023

Reimagining Rural Economic Development: Cooperation & the Future of Our Communities Conference

Alberta Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities

Event Type:

Over the past year, the Alberta Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities (University of Alberta, Augustana Campus in Camrose AB) has been exploring innovative uses of the co-operative model and their potential role in modern rural economic and community development.

The Reimagining Rural Economic Development Conference, hosted by the ACSRC and with project support from the Alberta Real Estate Foundation, represents the culmination of this work and will highlight ways that an old idea can breathe new life into rural communities across the province.

Aimed at rural community leaders, councillors, economic development and planning officers, and rural residents who care deeply about the future of their communities, this event will feature a collection of speakers including rural entrepreneurs, co-operative developers, and academics from across North America to showcase how innovative uses of the co-operative model can drive sustainable rural economic development. 

During this two-day conference, participants will:

  • be introduced to innovative uses of the co-operative model across a wide range of areas including green energy, commercial real estate, large and small scale agriculture, community capital investment, housing, and daycares
  • learn about how consumer, producer, and marketing co-ops, as well as worker-owned businesses and new generation agricultural co-ops, are generating positive economic growth and enhancing service delivery in rural communities
  • learn from successful rural co-operative founders about the opportunities and challenges co-ops can present and the lessons learned along the way
  • network and connect with co-op founders and developers who can help guide your local group and develop your idea into a thriving co-op in your rural community




Climate Change, Co-operatives, Entrepreneurship & Business Development, Local Economy, Partnership Building, Rural CED, Social Economy