Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy

The Comprehensive Economic Development Strategy (CEDS) is a federally required document that serves as a regional blueprint for creating a stronger, more diverse economy.  It is a strategy-driven plan for regional economic development and is the result of a regionally owned planning process designed to build capacity and guide the economic prosperity and resiliency of the greater Nashville area.  

The CEDS provides information to serve decision-makers as they determine the region’s economic development goals and appropriate plans for action. It allows business and government leaders throughout the region to set priorities for investments in both physical and human capital to solidify how the area as a whole will adapt to a constantly changing global economy.

GNRC is designated by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) as the Economic Development District for a 13-county area in northern Middle Tennessee. Funding to support the required planning is provided through a grant from EDA.  Matching funds are provided through GNRC membership dues.  

The development of the CEDS is guided by GNRC's Economic Development Advisory Committee. Membership of this committee is comprised of three mayors appointed by the GNRC President, business representatives appointed by each of the thirteen (13) county mayors, and social equity representatives also appointed by county mayors. The advisory committee frames the discussion, identifies stakeholders to engage in the process, develops goals and objectives, and recommends actions to implement the regional strategy.  

Five-Year Strategy for 2022-2026

GNRC’s governing body adopted the most recent 5-year CEDS in December 2021. The strategy establishes regional economic development goals, objectives, and identifies a set of proposed actions to support economic growth through 2026. More information is available online at

Annual Updates to the CEDS

GNRC works with its Economic Development Advisory Committee at least annually to discuss the continued relevance of the adopted strategy and to identify new insights or issues that might influence the economic landscape in the area. This yearly update is required by the U.S. EDA and includes the following activities.   

  • Review and discuss any potential changes in the regional analysis of Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, and Threats (SWOT) documented in the adopted five-year CEDS;
  • Review and discuss the continued relevance of the CEDS Goals, Objectives, and Proposed Actions;
  • Publish annual performance measures to track the region’s economic health and vitality;
  • Document any significant initiatives or accomplishments that have been made towards regional goals.

Have Feedback for the Annual Update?

GNRC is currently accepting public and stakeholder input to help finalize the annual update to the five-year CEDS.  The update is scheduled for approval at the full membership meeting of the Regional Council (GNRC's governing body) on December 13, 2023.  Comments may be submitted via the links below or provided in-person to the Regional Council body.  More information about that meeting can be viewed by clicking here.