Over one-half of the population of nonmetropolitan statistical areas of the United States live in a subset of nonmetropolitan geographies classified as Micropolitan areas. Over 27 million people live in these larger rural places, which are often anchor communities serving as regional hubs for commerce, employment and services. However, these areas are largely unexplored and under-studied and we may be missing key understandings of what factors drive and influence these regions. RUPRI intends to elevate the status and understanding of Micropolitan America through a series of forthcoming efforts. This introductory report, Micropolitan America: A New and Critical Part of the Nation’s Geography, lays out a brief overview of the salient features of Micropolitan America, presents an agenda for future work, and invites other practitioners, researchers and policymakers to engage with the effort.