• “Defining Rural Indiana – The First Step” explains that researchers used statistics from the 2010 U.S. Census to analyze trends at the county level over the past 20 years.
• “The Aging of Rural Indiana’s Population” concludes that aging is more pronounced in Indiana compared with the nation as a whole, especially in rural counties. The authors project that the older population of rural Indiana will grow rapidly “as the baby boomers retire en masse and as young people continue to leave.” This will create a need for additional labor to promote economic growth and for more services for the elderly.
• “Food Insecurity in Rural Indiana” explains that while the lack of adequate food for a healthy, active life is less prevalent in rural counties than in their urban counterparts, those dealing with it have more difficulty accessing the very programs designed to help them. The authors say leaders should determine whether the need for food aid has increased in their community and, if so, how to make healthy food more accessible to those needing it most.
• “The Role of Community Banks in Rural Indiana” notes that as the number of locally owned community “brick and mortar” banks deceases, the financial service needs of people in rural counties likely will be increasingly met through online banking.
Others published are “Population Trends in Rural Indiana,” “Poverty in Rural Indiana” and “Unemployment Trends in Rural Indiana.”
Other publications will be produced over coming months on such topics as food banks and pantries, nutrition, the condition of bridges, how poverty is linked to educational achievement, and availability of broadband Internet service.
The series is drawing on the resources of Purdue researchers, faculty and staff from the colleges of agriculture, education, engineering, health and human sciences and liberal arts, and the Purdue Center for Regional Development and the Indiana Local Technical Assistance Program.