Iowa State University
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News Service

News Service:

Annette Hacker, director,
(515) 294-3720

Office: (515) 294-4777

3-21-07

Contacts:

Mark Engelbrecht, College of Design dean, (515) 294-7427, mengelbr@iastate.edu

Tim Borich, Extension Community and Economic Development director, (515) 294-8707, borich@iastate.edu

Heather Sauer, College of Design communications, (515) 294-9289, hsauer@iastate.edu

Teddi Barron, News Service, (515) 294-4778, tbarron@iastate.edu

Impact of bioeconomy on Iowa's small towns is subject of ISU conference April 10

AMES, Iowa -- Iowa Gov. Chet Culver will present the keynote address at an Iowa State University conference on the implications of the emerging bioeconomy for Iowa's rural communities.

The conference, "Community Futures: The Small Town in the Bioeconomy," will be from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 10, at the Scheman Building, Iowa State University.

The conference, which is a follow-up to last November's bioeconomy summit at Iowa State, will address issues small towns could face as the bioeconomy develops in the state. These include matters related to transportation and infrastructure, the environment, taxes and finance, land use, and aesthetics. The conference is for local leaders, including city and county elected officials, economic development professionals, planners, design professionals, business owners and school officials.

"While there has been a great deal of discussion on biofuels and the bioeconomy, less discussion has been focused on the impact on rural communities and how they might best adapt," said Tim Borich, director of ISU Extension Community and Economic Development.

"What does all this mean to the small town? We hope this conference can begin to frame the right questions as well as provide answers for local decision makers," he said.

Following is a list of presentations and speakers:

  • "Leading a 21st Century Iowa Expedition" -- Gov. Culver
  • "Facets of the Bioeconomy Affecting the Small Towns in Iowa"-- Bruce Babcock, director of the ISU Center for Agricultural and Rural Development
  • "The Bioeconomy: Visual Aspects, Quality of Life and the Rural Landscape" -- Paul Anderson, ISU professor of landscape architecture; Julia Badenhope, ISU associate professor of landscape architecture; and Christopher Seeger, ISU assistant professor of landscape architecture and extension specialist
  • "The Opportunities and Issues of Small-town Life in the Bioeconomy" - Panel discussion with Jack Payne, ISU vice president for extension and outreach, moderator; John Allen, director, Western Rural Development Center, Utah State University; Robert Gramling, director, Center for Socioeconomic Research, University of Louisiana at Lafayette; and Tom Johnson, Frank Miller Professor of Agricultural Economics and director, Community Policy Analysis Center, University of Missouri.

Breakout sessions in the afternoon will allow participants to discuss issues in detail. Session topics include the environment, transportation and infrastructure, economic development, planning and land use, local government impacts (taxes and finance), and aesthetics and the surrounding landscape.

The conference is sponsored by Town/Craft, a joint effort of the Iowa State University College of Design, Hometown Perry, Iowa, and ISU Extension.

Registration is $50 on or before April 3, and $65 after April 3. To register, go to http://www.ucs.iastate.edu/mnet/communityfutures/home.html, or call (515) 294-6222.

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Quick look

"Community Futures: The Small Town in the Bioeconomy" will address issues small towns could face as the bioeconomy develops in the state. The conference will be from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. on Tuesday, April 10, at the Scheman Building, Iowa State University. Registration is $50 on or before April 3, and $65 after April 3. Register online or call (515) 294-6222.

Quote

"While there has been a great deal of discussion on biofuels and the bioeconomy, less discussion has been focused on the impact on rural communities and how they might best adapt."

Tim Borich, director of ISU Extension Community and Economic Development