Ideas at work

Find initiatives working to improve our economy and provide job opportunities, and learn about proven strategies for action.

Initiatives and Collaborations

North Dakota

Bank of North Dakota
As the only state-owned bank in the nation, the Bank of North Dakota acts as a funding resource in partnership with other financial institutions, economic development groups and guaranty agencies. The Bank of North Dakota has four established business areas: Student Loans, Lending Services, Treasury Services and Banking Services.

Community Action Partnership, North Dakota’s Poverty Fighting Network
Seven Community Action Agencies in North Dakota provide programs and services that empower low-income individuals and families to become self-sufficient. This site helps locate Community Action services and additional resources, provide information about low-income populations in North Dakota, and provide information about activities sponsored by Community Action and its Partners.

Council of State Governments Midwest
The Council of State Governments is a nonpartisan, region-based, national organization that promotes excellence in state government, serving all three branches of government in all 50 states and the U.S. territories. CSG Midwest focuses on meeting the needs of state policymakers and leaders in the nation's heartland and midwestern states: IL, IN, IA, KS, MI, MN, NE, ND, OH, SD, and WI. Policy and research topics include agriculture, environment, economic development, energy, health care, transportation, criminal justice, and education.

Developer Station
Developer Station is intended to be a statewide, online collaboration tool. It was launched in July of 2012 as an interactive, free, membership website for economic and community developers in North Dakota for rural community developers or those new to the job. It aims to serve as a networking and information hub.

Greater North Dakota Chamber
The Greater North Dakota Chamber works to make North Dakota’s business climate the best in the nation. Through strong advocacy, the Greater North Dakota Chamber promotes the policies that enable our state to establish a thriving business environment.

Independent Community Banks of North Dakota (ICBND), is the only state-wide association exclusively representing the independent community banks of North Dakota which enables its independent member banks to provide competitive, profitable, high-quality financial services to their communities.

Jamestown Regional Entrepreneur Center, an organization that fosters a culture of entrepreneurship and supports the creation of rural startups in the counties of Wells, Foster, Griggs, Stutsman, Barnes, Logan, McIntosh, and Dickey. The Center offers free of charge entrepreneurship events, customized training, and individual technical assistance to help with starting and building a business.

North Dakota Center for Nursing
The mission of the North Dakota Center for Nursing is to guide the ongoing development of a well-prepared and diverse nursing workforce to meet the needs of the citizens of North Dakota through research, education, recruitment and retention, advocacy and public policy.

North Dakota Department of Career and Technical Education
The State Board for Career and Technical Education, as North Dakota's public workforce education and training delivery system, is committed to providing career awareness, work readiness skills, occupational preparation, and retraining of workers throughout the state. Career and technical education will span all educational levels, providing youth with exploration opportunities and the foundation skills needed to enter the world of work while providing adults with skills needed to enter, re-enter, or advance in the workforce.

North Dakota Department of Commerce - Economic Development and Finance
Business incentives, government accessibility, and workforce performance, combined with North Dakota's favorable position as one of the lowest cost states for operating a business, are driving top companies to establish operations in North Dakota. The Economic Development and Finance division provides full-service site location, incentive packaging and business liaison assistance.

Small Business Development Center, North Dakota
The ND Small Business Development Center helps individuals start, manage and grow their businesses. The ND SBDC is committed to growing North Dakota‘s economy and is the premier source for small business assistance in the form of advising, training, and research.

Vision West ND
The Vision West ND project, which covers the 19 oil and gas producing counties in western North Dakota, is setting the stage for economic sustainability. Through strategic planning sessions, community leaders and citizens identify strategies most likely to succeed in their region. The primary goals of the project are to address immediate, short-term needs to meet growth management challenges and establish a diversified economy in the future through the development of local and regional strategic plans.


Jump$tart is a national coalition of organizations dedicated to improving the financial literacy of kindergarten through K12 grade youth by providing advocacy, research, standards and educational resources. Jump$tart strives to prepare youth for life-long successful financial decision-making.

National Center for Children in Poverty
The National Center for Children in Poverty (NCCP) is one of the nation’s leading public policy centers dedicated to promoting the economic security, health, and well-being of America’s low-income families and children. NCCP uses research to inform policy and practice with the goal of ensuring positive outcomes for the next generation. They seek to promote family-oriented solutions at the state and national levels.

UnidosUS, formerly known as National Council of La Raza,is the largest national Hispanic civil rights and advocacy organization in the United States—works to improve opportunities for Hispanic Americans. Through its network of nearly 300 affiliated community-based organizations, the organization reaches millions of Hispanics each year in 41 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia. To achieve its mission, UnidosUS conducts applied research, policy analysis, and advocacy, providing a Latino perspective in five key areas—assets/investments, civil rights/immigration, education, employment and economic status, and health. In addition, it provides capacity-building assistance to its Affiliates who work at the state and local level to advance opportunities for individuals and families.

National Young Farmers Coalition
The National Young Farmers Coalition supports practices and policies that will sustain young, independent and prosperous farmers now and in the future. We envision a country where young people who are willing to work, get trained and take a little risk can support themselves and their families in farming.

Rural Health Information Hub (RHIhub)
The Rural Assistance Center was established as a rural health and human services information portal. RAC helps rural communities and other rural stakeholders access the full range of available programs, funding sources, and research that can enable them to provide quality health and better health care services to rural residents.

U.S. Small Business Administration
The U.S. Small Business Administration has delivered millions of loans, loan guarantees, contracts, counseling sessions and other forms of assistance to small businesses. SBA provides assistances primarily through its four programmatic functions: 1) Access to Capital (Business Financing); 2) Entrepreneurial Development (Education, Information, and Technical Assistance & Training); 3) Government Contracting (Federal Procurement); and 4) Advocacy (Voice for Small Business).

Evidence Based Strategies

These websites identify proven strategies to address this topic area. Keep in mind that each source differs in their definition of what is "evidence-based" or "proven."

Conduent Community and Population Health
Healthy Communities Institute provides resources to identify at-risk populations and areas of need, implement evidence-based programs, create efficiencies through internal and community-based partnerships, and track and report measurable results in a compelling way.

Lifecourse Interventions to Nurture Kids Successfully (LINKS), Child Trends
A synthesis of what was learned from experimentally evaluated programs in Child Trends’ What Works database into fact sheets and grouped them into three categories: population, program outcome (Social-Emotional Difficulties, Early Language and Literacy, Acting-Out/Externalizing, Asthma Education, Obesity, Substance Use, Reproductive Health, Civic Engagement) and program approach (Home Visiting, Summer Learning, Parent Involvement, Self Sufficiency).

Social Programs that Work
Includes information about social program interventions across an array of topics, including early childhood through postsecondary education, housing, employment, crime, and health and mental health. Sponsored by the Coalition for Evidence-Based Policy.

Vibrant Rural Communities Case Studies Series
The National Association of Development Organizations hosts a collection of case studies describing how rural communities and regions use strategies including downtown redevelopment, historic preservation, streetscape improvements, land conservation, and tourism to grow economies and create stronger communities. Currently, case studies feature New Mexico, Kentucky, Wisconsin, Georgia, Wyoming, Pennsylvania, and Iowa.

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North Dakota Compass

Center for Social Research
North Dakota State University

Compass created by:
Wilder Research

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