The purpose of the Qualla 2020 Project is to diversify the Cherokee economy and reduce its risks so that it can better ensure the well-being of the Cherokee population into the future. In order to do this, the Qualla 2020 Project will seek to mitigate the dependence of the economy on gaming revenues, and to develop and expand businesses in ways that uphold the core values of the Cherokee people.
The planning work was performed by the Qualla 2020 Committee, which was composed of a broad cross section of individuals from the Qualla Boundary and the surrounding regions. The Qualla 2020 planning processes were conducted in a manner that referred to and incorporated traditional Cherokee values.
The planning process led to the development of eleven action plans for diversifying the Cherokee economy in four areas: real estate, tourism, small business/entrepreneurial development, and knowledge industry. Each plan specifies the organizational home, activities, resources required, potential funding sources, and a timeline.