The Extension Institute of Community Development helps communities realize their potential through strategy and economic development. We work with communities to build the vitality that grows their population. By coaching people and groups to effectively interact with their local governments, educating on broadband and e-commerce opportunities, and providing the foundation to grow community and regional food systems, the Communities Institute plants and cultivates the seeds for thriving municipalities.
Granting access to facilities and technical assistance for aspiring food processors and other food & farm entrepreneurs
Providing a one-stop resource for community business development focused primarily on small city downtowns
Providing applied research, educational programs, and assistance to individuals, local governments, and community organizations
Bringing together educational programs and resources offered by University Extension programs nationwide
Did You Know
Many people already know of our popular programs, but did you know that we also:
- provide access to facilities and technical assistance for aspiring food processors and other food & farm entrepreneurs
- educate about making your community aging friendly
- help expand the research and knowledge base for local government education
- create economic reports and regional economic profiles
- And much more! Check with your local office for more programs near you.
Community Development Updates
Community Development Publications
The Learning Store produces and distributes educational materials based on university research, extending knowledge to the statewide community.
View Related Topics on the Learning Store
Find Your Local Office
Cooperative Extension experts live and work in the communities they serve. Our team offers insight and solutions based on a deep understanding of local needs and priorities.
A Part of the Youth, Family & Community Development Program Area
Cooperative Extension’s research and outreach improves the lives of Wisconsinites through action, education and community partnerships. We set rural and urban communities up to thrive by supporting their economic development and organizational and leadership development. We show individuals how to build financial capability and encourage them toward the most nourishing health habits.
JulieAnn Stawicki became the interim Associate Dean of Youth, Family, and Community Development in 2017. Prior to this position, JulieAnn served as an associate professor in the Department of Youth Development with seven years of experience at Cooperative Extension, as a statewide specialist in the 4-H Youth Development program, and as the leader of the Health Task Force in the Family Living program.