- Thesis (M.S., Bioregional Planning) -- University of Idaho, 2016 | Major shifts in the economic, social and demographic structure of the American West have taken place over the last 50 years. These changes have roots in three broad categories—the increasing concern for environmental quality, changes in technological innovation, and changing macroeconomic conditions. Several studies have used economic base theory to better understand the economic structure of western counties that emerged from the restructuring that occurred during the second half of the twentieth century. This study aims to more comprehensively capture the array of sources that contribute to a county’s economic base and to better understand this restructuring in the Rocky Mountain West (RMW) over the most recent recession by using a Social Accounting Matrix (SAM). A typology is created based on the SAM outputs which is then used to detect socioeconomic patterns across groups and to assess the economic shifts as a result of the Time of Shedding and Cold Rocks.