The Rural Policy Research Institute (RUPRI) provides nonpartisan, research-based analysis and information on the challenges, needs, and opportunities facing rural communities. Our formation in 1990 stemmed from a bipartisan group of U.S. Senators who sought to understand the rural differential impact of public policies and programs. As such, RUPRI aims to foster public dialogue and to help policymakers understand the rural impacts of public policies and programs.


The mission of the Rural Policy Research Institute is to:

  • Undertake unbiased research and analysis on the challenges, needs, and opportunities facing rural America.
  • Improve the understanding of the impacts of public policies and programs on rural people and places, using original research and policy analysis.
  • Facilitate dialogue and collaboration among the diverse community, policy, practice, and research interests focused on a sustainable rural America.


Rural people and places have the resources and capacities to create strong, viable, meaningful, and sustainable futures that can both withstand and turn to advantage the forces of globalization and economic, demographic, and social change.

Policy Impact

RUPRI serves as a trusted source of expertise regarding the causes and consequences of the rural differential in public policies. Our reach is both national and international, and RUPRI is recognized as a trusted source of research-grounded expertise regarding the rural differential in public policies.

Our scholars examine state policy to make recommendations for policymakers and state agencies, as well as considerations at the community level for sustainable planning.

We provide expert testimony and insight to the federal government, including the United States Congress. We also participate in the global conversation on rural issues.

Focus Areas

RUPRI provides credible research and relevant policy insights using a collaborative approach that connects experts from across the United States to build teams with both a common commitment to research excellence and relevance to policy and practice.

Learn about our teams and the broad range of topics that we examine, including health, cultural wealth, and public policy.

Key Frameworks

RUPRI provides research, analysis, and recommendations using frameworks of knowledge.

Learn about our frameworks.


Our leadership is composed of academics and practitioners from across the United States.