Advancing the Rural Alberta Real Estate Market Through Innovative Local Co-operatives

Real estate prices in rural communities are dependent upon two interrelated factors: the availability of good jobs, and the availability of a variety of services that make a community a desirable place to live. It is well known that rural communities have, for at least 2-3 decades, faced significant job losses and population decline in the face of globalization, the competitive pressure for economies of scale in agricultural production, and, most recently the fossil fuel industry downturn.

The struggle to attract outside investment, the traditional path sought in rural economic development across the province, will continue to grow more difficult for most rural communities going forward, placing significant downward pressure on real estate prices in these locations.

This project aims to stabilize and improve the real estate market throughout rural Alberta over the long term by exploring and advocating for the potential inherent in new and innovative local cooperatives to act as significant stimulants in rural economic and community development throughout the province.

The research component of the project will be summarized in a Final Report, a Guide for Municipalities, a Guide for Interested Citizens, an academic article, a magazine article, a series of shorter “Policy Briefs”, and an online Webinar for wide dissemination. The Alberta Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities will also host a two-day conference on local co-operatives and rural development for representatives of rural municipalities and organizations across Alberta.

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Real Estate Leadership – Increase resilience and population retention in rural communities to support a stable real estate market through research into and/or implementation of policy, practices, or projects.

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Real Estate Leadership: Build and elevate the capacity of real estate and related professionals to keep pace with the massive changes facing the real estate industry today and into the future.


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University of Alberta, Alberta Centre for Sustainable Rural Communities

The ACSRC is a joint-initiative of the Augustana Campus and Faculty of ALES, and has a core operating budget and staff supported by both of these faculties. Project funds are derived from research and other grants, contribution agreements and contracts with agencies such as the Tri-Council, provincial government and similar bodies.