Sarah Low speaking at a podiumSarah A. Low is an associate professor of regional economics and holds the Fred V. Heinkel Chair in Agriculture within the Division of Applied Social Sciences at the University of Missouri. She also directs MU Extension’s Exceed – Regional Economic and Entrepreneurial Development program, which provides high-quality research and insights to enhance economic development opportunities.

Research and Extension

Sarah conducts research and extension outreach in several areas related to regional and rural economic development. Those fields include regional economic development, entrepreneurship as a rural economic development strategy, broadband access and adoption, business dynamics and survival, value-added agriculture, economic impact analysis, spatial analysis and regional employment portfolios.

Graduate Student Advising

Sarah Low and four grad students

Sarah enjoys mentoring and advising graduate students. She’s pictured with Martha Bass, graduate student in rural sociology, and Quyen Nguyen, Maria Kuhns, and Tuka Bekee, graduate students in agricultural and applied economics. She advised these students at the 2019 Applied Economics, Regional and Urban Studies Midwest Graduate Student Summit.

Sarah is very willing to supervise qualified MS and PhD students in Mizzou’s Agricultural and Applied Economics graduate program who share her interests in regional and rural economic development. For more information about graduate studies, contact Sarah. See a full list of previous and current advisees in her CV.


Sarah Low receiving plaqueMore about Sarah

Sarah grew up in rural Scotland and dreamed of living in the U.S., where she envisioned that hard work—combined with hope and economic mobility—could get you anywhere you wanted to go. Adolescent experiences cemented her interest in improving rural livelihoods through research and policy. Her first job after graduate school was in the economic research division at the Federal Reserve Bank of Kansas City, as part of their Center for the Study of Rural America, seemingly a dream-come-true.

Outside of the university, Sarah serves on the Southern Regional Science Association council and for the Agricultural and Applied Economics Association, she currently chairs the Community and Regional Economics Network (CRENET). She is an External Research Associate with Colorado State University’s Regional Economic Development Institute (REDI) and a volunteer with USDA Economic Research Service. She also sits on the City of Columbia’s Broadband Business Planning Task Force.Sarah Low training her sheepdog Bruce

Outside of work, Sarah enjoys spending time with her husband, Mark, and their son on the water. She also enjoys training and competing with her Belgian Sheepdogs, Bruce and Wendy.