CGI America 2015



Plenary Session

New Horizons: Unlocking the Potential of Rural America

Plaza Building

While only 8 percent of American households are in rural areas, the country’s wide open spaces are at the heart of the American identity. Although decades of slowing industry, lagging investment in basic services, and the pressures of a globalizing economy have taken a toll on rural America, a transformation is underway. Record-setting agricultural exports, enormous growth in new and traditional energy development, and untapped human capital markets are making rural America the country’s newest growth frontier.
In this session, participants will discuss the future of rural economic development, highlighting:

• The growth potential in a range of sectors across rural America.
• Investment streams available for rural development.
• Challenges and opportunities to enhance economic security for rural Americans.

Closing Plenary Session

Comeback Cities

Plaza Building

While the Great Recession impacted most American communities, for some it compounded decades of economic decline and decay. Today, across the country, cities that had lost population, jobs, and hope for years are turning themselves around through a series of different approaches. Building dynamic local economies does not have a one-size-fits-all solution and often requires communities to fundamentally reinvent themselves, while also harnessing their traditional strengths. By leveraging distinct sectoral and geographic advantages, creating long-term development strategies to attract both financial and human capital, and working together through cross-sector partnerships, cities are capitalizing on their potential and building a new future.
In this session, participants representing cities along a continuum of development will highlight:

• Effective, long-term strategies for cooperation and collaboration across sectors.
• Innovative economic development strategies, including the use of anchor institutions and the role of entrepreneurship.
• Continued needs and opportunities for cities looking to rebuild their economies.


President Bill Clinton, Founding Chairman, Clinton Global Initiative, 42nd President of the United States
Michael Hancock, Mayor, City & County of Denver