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Protecting land in parks is often seen as coming at the expense of rural economic development. Yet recent events such as the contentious debate over the development of Canyon Forest Village on the south rim of the Grand Canyon suggest just the opposite: healthy natural systems can be enormously valuable to rural economies. National Parks and Rural Development offers a thorough examination of the interdependent roles of national parks and the economies of rural communities in the United States. Bringing together the thinking and views of economists, historians, sociologists, recreation researchers, and park managers, the book considers how those roles can be most effectively managed, as it offers: - a wide-ranging review of history and important concepts in rural development and parks management - five case studies of rural development near national parks that identify lessons learned, principles applied, mistakes committed, and advances made - personal essays from leaders in the parks management field For each section, the editors offer introductory discussions that provide context and highlight key points. The editors also provide a detailed conclusion, which summarises policy implications and presents specific recommendations for improving rural development and park management policies. Case studies include: Cape Cod National Seashore, Alaskan parks and wilderness areas, Yellowstone National Park, the Grand Canyon, and three parks in the Pacific Northwest (Mt. Rainier, Olympic, and North Cascades). National Parks and Rural Development is a unique synthesis and guide to solving conflicts between the needs of human communities and nature near federal lands. It will be an important work for agency personnel, non-governmental organisations, and students and scholars of rural economic development, public policy, environmental economics, and related fields.