On January 14th, members of the ‘Building the Future’ research team shared the first-stage of findings from the project with staff at the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food and Rural Affairs as well as others from across the Ontario Public Service.

Dr. Ryan Gibson (University of Guelph), Dr. Sean Markey (Simon Fraser University), Ashleigh Weeden (PhD Candidate, University of Guelph), Melissa Visser (MSc Student, University of Guelph), Jay Maloney (MSc Student, Simon Fraser University), Scott Butler (Executive Director, Ontario Good Roads Association), and Karla Uliana (Senior Policy Advisor, OMAFRA) shared highlights from a recently completed survey of municipal leaders across rural Ontario as well as case-studies of projects where rural communities have successfully linked infrastructure management to economic development. More than 80 participants attended the workshop to hear from the research team as well as from project partners about the value of community-engaged scholarship and strategic research partnerships. The ‘Building the Future’ research project serves as an excellent example of collaboration between researchers, community leaders, advocacy organizations, and policy makers.

The Building the Future project is funded by OMAFRA and the University of Guelph through the Ontario Agri-Food Innovation Alliance.

To learn more about the project, please click the ‘Building the Future’ link in the Projects tab, or visit www.ruraldev.ca/infrastructure