10:00 am EDT - 11:30 am EDT

Past Event

On the Front Porch with Tony Pipa and Brent Orrell: A conversation with Elizabeth Currid-Halkett about ‘The Overlooked Americans’

Thursday, April 04, 2024

10:00 am - 11:30 am EDT

Online only

Contemporary differences between rural and urban areas in America have their roots in long-term demographic, economic, technological, and social factors. In the “On the Front Porch” series, Tony Pipa (Brookings) and Brent Orrell (American Enterprise Institute) sit down with authors of recent research on issues facing rural America to explore these factors and more. These conversations seek to unpack the unique challenges and opportunities facing rural America and consider policy options to promote prosperity and opportunity outside the nation’s major metropolitan areas.

On April 4, Pipa and Orrell held an event “on the front porch” with Elizabeth Currid-Halkett, whose recent book “The Overlooked Americans: The Resilience of Our Rural Towns and What It Means for Our Country,” reveals that rural America is more successful than outsiders often presume. Drawing on deep research, including data and in-depth interviews, she traces how small towns are doing as well as—or better than—cities on many measures, including homeownership, income, and employment. She also shows how rural and urban Americans share core values—even on hot button issues such as racism and environmental sustainability—revealing that the nation is less fractured by geography than we might believe.

Online viewers submitted questions via email to and via X (Twitter) to @BrookingsGlobal using #OnTheFrontPorch.


In Partnership With

American Enterprise Institute
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American Enterprise Institute