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What is Rural Innovation?

Small and medium sized enterprises are stimulating the rural economy and contributing to community growth. Rural entrepreneurs and innovators are creating opportunities for our youth to stay and work at home.


The Rural Innovation Centre (RIC) supports entrepreneurs and businesses in the Annapolis Valley and on the South Shore by providing training, advisory and consulting services to small businesses, government and not-for-profit organizations. The Rural Innovation Centre is an incubator for start up companies to access working space and support, networking events, mentors and connect to Acadia faculty and facilities.

RIC includes space for 8-10 “resident” companies as well as an open area with workspace for student entrepreneurs. In keeping with the services’ sector focus, space was also created for three industry research Centres (Tidal, Wine & ICT). The staff of these centres work closely with resident and affiliate companies on innovative projects that will help these sector-based companies prosper.

Acadia Entrepreneurship Centre provides these services in partnership with Research and Graduate Studies and the Office of Industry and Community Engagement . We aim to facilitate industry engagement with Acadia University staff and resources in three key sectors: tidal energy; agri-food; and information and communications technology (ICT). Rural Innovation Centre (RIC) supports and stimulates economic and community growth, facilitates connections, and increases levels of innovation and commercialization in the Annapolis Valley and in Southwest Nova Scotia. RIC is housed in Patterson Hall, with the F. C. Manning School of Business, at Acadia University.