How we manage population centers is intertwined with our conservation of wild areas. The more we create equitable population centers in places people want to live, the more we can create durable, landscape-scale conservation outcomes outside of towns.
The outdoor recreation economy is large, growing faster than the overall economy, and consists of jobs in many industries. Explore data by state.
Millions of national park visitors generate economic opportunities for gateway communities, spending money that creates jobs and income. See the trends for every national park service unit.
Amenity communities face unique challenges from waves of tourists and new residents. Proactive planning can help avoid being loved to death.
Find the latest American Community Survey data in all of our tools, including the Economic Profile System and Neighborhoods at Risk.
Unaffordable housing came to a head during the pandemic as communities across the country saw unprecedented rises in housing costs.
The unprecedented rise in housing prices since 2020 has affected renters more than homeowners—especially in places that were already unaffordable.
Nearly half of rural communities have grown so much since the 1970s they are now classified as “urban.” Those that remain are diverse, but often have more specialized economies.
State and federal fiscal policies hurt rural communities by limiting how local governments can grow, diversify, and invest revenue.
The number of western Montana homes in areas with high wildfire hazard has doubled, outpacing development rates in areas with low wildfire hazard.
As U.S. jobless claims reach historic levels from the coronavirus pandemic, find the latest county-level unemployment numbers.
Most U.S. states are adding electricity generation capacity faster than capacity is being retired. Renewable energy adds the most capacity in 18 states.
The capacity to generate electricity has transitioned from coal to natural gas to renewable energy, a trend projected to continue.
Where rural recreation counties rely on public funding for health care, fiscal solutions should diversify the ways local governments can save and spend.
View a presentation given at the Our America’s Rural Opportunity forum about the context of public lands and the rural west.
The most effective fiscal policies for communities facing transition away from coal dependency are those that build wealth over time and strengthen community capacity.
Montana’s outdoors attracts people and talent, creating jobs and a high quality of life. The outdoors is essential to the state’s future economic growth.
Funding for Montana’s working lands, wildlife, and outdoor recreation is not keeping pace as population, visitation, and development pressures expand.
Rural and isolated communities face wrenching economic and demographic transitions. A solution to uncertainty is to focus on resilience.
Updated: Headwaters Economics compiled 144 trails research studies on the impacts of trails in a single library, searchable by type of benefit, use, year, and region.