Stories and Reports

Colorado River
In Crisis

Stories and Reports

The Western
Energy Boom

Stories and Reports

Health Care in
the Rural West

Historical Background

The Country Life Commission

Dear Visitor: This site preserves the legacy publications of the Rural West Initiative from 2009-2014. 
For more recent information on our conference and publications, please go to

Report: Energy and the Global West

Map showing points of foreign investment in the American West. View interactive map »


Examining The Global West

We live in a global West. Even the most remote rural areas of the American West are plugged into the global economy. This has long been true. And it is even more so today. The connections between the local and the global run from the simple and straightforward to the complicated.  

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Feature Story

The Global West: How Foreign Investment Fuels Resource Extraction in Western States

China's insatiable energy appetite is fueling a natural resource boom in the West.  

Read the story »


Rural West Working Paper

Fossil Fuels, Foreign Trade, and Foreign Investment in the American West

Foreign direct investment in fossil fuel production occurs at a much lower rate than foreign direct investment in the American economy in general. Most of that investment comes from companies based in Europe, Canada, and Australia — and not from Asia — continuing a historical pattern.

Read the Working Paper »


Interactive Map

Global Players in the West's Extraction Economy

International influence in the West's natural resource sectors is nothing new. But in recent years, the influence from Asia and former Communist bloc countries has risen substantially.

View the Map »

Last modified Mon, 25 Jul, 2011 at 16:18