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Abstract

In 1990, the Federal Government embarked on an experiment to conduct business differently in the rural development field. At the center of that effort, known as the National Rural Development Partnership, was the creation of State Rural Development Councils. The Councils include members from Federal, State, local, and tribal governments and from for-profit and nonprofit organizations. While Councils differ widely, a study of 16 of them found that they had modest early successes in improving communication and cooperation among members, expanding rural issues beyond traditional agricultural concerns to human resource and environmental quality concerns, and addressing local problems in a more coordinated manner.

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