The website is a collaboration of the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness, the Center for Rural Entrepreneurship and EntreWorks Consulting, on behalf of the Appalachian Regional Commission. It is a resource for information on entrepreneurial ecosystems throughout Appalachia, which encompasses 420 counties across 13 states and serves as a source for data and programs related to entrepreneurship in Appalachia.
An "entrepreneurial ecosystem" is a network of entrepreneurs and the service providers that support them. By creating a supportive environment for entrepreneurs, communities can spur local and regional economic development. Entrepreneurial ecosystems are important to Appalachia because they can help the region diversify its economy, create jobs, and increase the flow of capital, finance, goods, and services into communities.
Through this website, users are able to gauge entrepreneurial performance in a given Appalachian county compared to its home state, the Appalachian counties within that state, the whole Appalachian region, and the United States. The site includes:
- Dynamism Dashboard which captures "entrepreneurial dynamism", a measure of performance across three dimensions: Startups, Stage 2 Businesses and High Growth Businesses.
- Resource Inventory is designed to help community leaders understand the range of programs and resources related to seven elements that comprise a robust entrepreneurial ecosystem.
- Project Research and Reports includes literature review, case studies and reports.
The goal of the project is to document entrepreneurship metrics and strengthen Appalachian communities' understanding of the entrepreneurial environment not only locally, but across the larger region.
Source: Appalachian Regional Commission
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