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Rural Transformation in the 21st Century: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and High-Tech Economies in Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula

dc.contributor.authorBohaczek, Jean
dc.date.accessioned2020-10-04T23:37:32Z
dc.date.availableNO_RESTRICTION
dc.date.available2020-10-04T23:37:32Z
dc.date.issued2020
dc.identifier.urihttps://hdl.handle.net/2027.42/163253
dc.description.abstractHow do rural regions reframe and reinvent themselves through contemporary modes of high-tech innovation and entrepreneurship? How do pushes for rural development prepare the rural to be incorporated into technological futures? How does regional culture get taken up in processes of economic development? How do regional approaches to innovation break down? It is the promise for economic growth and transformation, driven by high-tech economies, entrepreneurship, and technological innovation, that is the phenomenon at the center of this dissertation. This dissertation examines in ethnographic detail how this promise comes at a time when regional approaches to economic and civic transformation seek to reframe rural places as attractive alternatives to the big city. I focus on the practice of economic development, especially that associated with the contemporary high-tech economy, by economic developers, municipal leaders, and entrepreneurs to create new opportunities and fulfill promises for growth in the Keweenaw Peninsula of Michigan. I do this by identifying three processes of economization: codifying rural readiness, crafting the rural entrepreneur, and zoning rural exceptionalism. Codifying rural readiness demonstrates how redevelopment initiatives in the State of Michigan work to digitize rural assets. Through this process, initiatives identify the “right” and “wrong” kinds of rural data, reshaping and repackaging rurality and rural communities to attract private investment. Crafting the rural entrepreneur shows how economic development organizations (EDOs) identify and extract cultural assets from rural regions and transform them into a type of rural capital that can be leveraged by anyone, whether they are from the region or not. I demonstrate how these same EDOs market regional culture to attract the “right” kinds of entrepreneurs and innovators to the region. Zoning rural exceptionalism reveals how rural communities are able to leverage economic development policy and the corresponding opportunities to differentiate themselves as rural players in the new economy. Each of these processes serve to identify and enculturate rural communities into 21st century forms of neoliberal capitalism perpetuated in the high-tech and digital economy.
dc.language.isoen_US
dc.subjectRural economic development
dc.subjectEntrepreneurship and innovation
dc.subjectTechnological futures
dc.titleRural Transformation in the 21st Century: Entrepreneurship, Innovation, and High-Tech Economies in Michigan's Keweenaw Peninsula
dc.typeThesis
dc.description.thesisdegreenamePHD
dc.description.thesisdegreedisciplineInformation
dc.description.thesisdegreegrantorUniversity of Michigan, Horace H. Rackham School of Graduate Studies
dc.contributor.committeememberLindtner, Silvia
dc.contributor.committeememberVeinot, Tiffany
dc.contributor.committeememberSandvig, Christian E
dc.contributor.committeememberDillahunt, Tawanna Ruth
dc.contributor.committeememberGray, Mary
dc.subject.hlbsecondlevelInformation and Library Science
dc.subject.hlbsecondlevelUrban Planning
dc.subject.hlbtoplevelBusiness and Economics
dc.subject.hlbtoplevelSocial Sciences
dc.description.bitstreamurlhttp://deepblue.lib.umich.edu/bitstream/2027.42/163253/1/jkhardy_1.pdfen_US
dc.owningcollnameDissertations and Theses (Ph.D. and Master's)


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