Regional Economics
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Whole Foods Finds Success in Smaller Cities

Whole Foods Finds Success in Smaller Cities | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
In a furious effort to expand, the chain is opening shop and looking for local suppliers in places like Boise, Idaho.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

On Whole Foods small market store strategy! Featuring Boise, ID...

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U.S. cities' fiscal health is lagging behind other sectors of the economy as the recovery slowly takes hold.

U.S. cities' fiscal health is lagging behind other sectors of the economy as the recovery slowly takes hold. | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
American cities' fiscal health is lagging behind other sectors of the economy as the recovery slowly takes hold.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Some shocking statistics! Not just the case of Detroit...

"Buffeted by steep drops in state aid, rising pension and health-care costs and sluggish property-tax revenue, many urban centers are struggling even several years after the financial crisis."

Read about the study here: http://stream.wsj.com/story/latest-headlines/SS-2-63399/SS-2-365534/

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Global cities revisited

Global cities revisited | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
IN 1991, Saskia Sassen, a sociologist, wrote her most famous work, “The Global City”. It argued that large, technologically advanced urban areas defined the...
Michail Fragkias's insight:

The future relationship of "livable cities" to economic development is projected to be strong...

From the Economist: --Low business taxes will not be the only factor that determines whether cities are good at attracting subsidiaries. And others, like market proximity and regulation, are less important to managers than people might think. Instead, McKinsey reckons that new subsidiaries will locate in cities with high “livability”.--

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Idaho's Economic Development Dashboard

We are constantly developing new visualizations for economic development data relevant to the State of Idaho and the Boise Metropolitan Area. Our dashboard of economic indicators will also house ou...
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A dashboard of economic and demographic indicators related to economic development in Idaho is now posted on the BRED website. The site is continually evolving, presenting new specialized information as the Center conducts new research. Your feedback is always very welcome!

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Manufacturing ‘clusters’ policies unlikely to drive prosperity

Manufacturing ‘clusters’ policies unlikely to drive prosperity | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Provincial and municipal governments have been creating incentives to generate industrial clusters within their jurisdictions. But their efforts are unlikely to do the trick.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

An interesting perspective on the role of "manufacturing cluster" policies for economic development and the dream of creating outliers:

"Green technology, aviation, biotech — you name it. Policymakers across the country are trying to lure the latest in-vogue industry to set up manufacturing clusters within their respective jurisdictions. However, government support for manufacturing clusters may not be as effective as other policies, such as free trade or building bigger cities, in boosting the incomes of the people they represent."

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The Only Startups That Matter to Job Creation

The Only Startups That Matter to Job Creation | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
You hear it all the time: Small business is the engine of U.S. job creation, so they need tender loving care, like special tax breaks and other goodies. This narrative is wrong.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

An interesting report from the  Kauffman Foundation with an insightful showing that "not all small businesses are equal-opportunity job destroyers. High-tech startups are different. Unlike small businesses overall, they create net new jobs."


Note that the Boise-Nampa MSA is in the top 25 metros in the nation for high-tech startup density (using data circa 2010).

 

The report can be accessed directly here: http://www.kauffman.org/uploadedFiles/bds-tech-starts-report.pdf

H/T to the LinkedIn Entrepreneurship and Small Business Group.

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Suburban Poverty Traverses the Red/Blue Divide

Suburban Poverty Traverses the Red/Blue Divide | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
During the 2000s, major metropolitan suburbs became home to the largest and fastest-growing poor population in America.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Metropolitan suburbs across the nation are becoming home to the largest and fastest-growing poor population in America. Idaho is unfortunately one of the worst-hit States of the U.S. in terms of suburban poverty with the suburban poor population doubling during the last decade.

 

The new Brookings data shows that for the State's Congressional Districts 1 and 2 the percentage change in suburban poor population during the decade was 105.5% and 93.2% respectively. Suburban poverty rate grew from 9.7% to 13.5%  in Congressional District 1 and from 8.1% to 11.4% in Congressional District 2. The findings show that this is not an issue related to partizan affiliation, but the challenges regional economies faced in the 2000s. Hopefully, the economic recovery will reverse this trend but the Brookings report may help to elevate the subject in the Congressional agenda.

 

You can find more on the methodology adopted in the study here: http://www.brookings.edu/research/reports/2013/08/06-suburban-poverty-berube-kneebone-williams

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Micron gets a 'screamin’ deal’ with $2.5B purchase of Elpida | Micron Technology | Idahostatesman.com

Micron gets a 'screamin’ deal’ with $2.5B purchase of Elpida | Micron Technology | Idahostatesman.com | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Here’s what buying a competitor could mean for the Boise-based company and the Treasure Valley
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Great news for Boise! The Statesman reports that Micron Technology Inc.’s has purchased a bankrupt Japanese competitor, increasing it's market share in memory chips and memory production capacity. The merger “will result in enhanced (research and development) and manufacturing scale, significant cost and production synergies and a stronger memory product portfolio to provide solutions to our customers," Micron CEO Mark Durcan said.


Read more here: http://www.idahostatesman.com/2013/07/31/2681507/micron-gets-a-screamin-deal-with.html#storylink=cpy
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No city is an island

No city is an island | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
No city can ever be truly sustainable on its own, an international study has said.
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Thoughts on urban sustainability in the 21st Century...

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Top 100 Best Places to Live | Livability

Top 100 Best Places to Live | Livability | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Compare cities by quality of life features with Livability's 2014 Top 100 Best Places to Live in the U.S. rankings with scores for all aspects of great places
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Boise is listed as #11 in this new list of top 100 U.S places to live from Livability.com. The Martin Prosperity Institute is in part responsible for the creation of the list:

"More than ever, the decision of where to live has become one of the most important decisions we can make, as it can influence numerous aspects of our lives. Recently, more and more factors are influencing this choice, as employment is not always the primary reason for many. Amenities, housing values, demographics, infrastructure, walkability and many other attributes, can influence this decision, and since people, are the greatest form of capital through their knowledge and creativity, many regions are trying to develop their communities to attract this hot commodity. Livability.com aims to help individuals with this important decision by exploring what makes small to mid-sized cities great places to live, work and visit, by examining numerous attributes from cultural amenities and sustainability to walkability and transportation."

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Michail Fragkias: Idaho faces infrastructure challenges | Boise State on Business | Idahostatesman.com

Michail Fragkias: Idaho faces infrastructure challenges | Boise State on Business | Idahostatesman.com | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Idaho relies heavily on infrastructure, like water and sewage systems, roads, bridges, dams and power plants. Much of that infrastructure is aging, requiring repairs or replacement.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Thoughts on Idaho's infrastructure!

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Boise eyes more open space for $10 million | Boise, Garden City, Mountain Home | Idahostatesman.com

Boise eyes more open space for $10 million | Boise, Garden City, Mountain Home | Idahostatesman.com | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
The City Council is scheduled to vote Tuesday on whether to put a bond on the November ballot.
Michail Fragkias's insight:

This is an important development for the prosperity of Boise residents in the next decades since natural amenities - such as open space  - increase quality-of-life. Urban (landscape) ecology and urban economics studies can shed more light on the relevant issues and point towards the most beneficial location decisions! This research is badly needed in the region, irrespective of whether the measure passes this time...

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The Global Population in 2100

The Global Population in 2100 | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Solving many of the world’s biggest environmental challenges may have just gotten more difficult.
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An interesting infographic on the revised global forecasts for population growth from the UN DESA with a potential of significant effects in plans for economic development and business growth!

"In June the Population Division of the Department of Economic and Social Affairs of the United Nations Secretariat released revised global population data. The midline estimate — more than 10.8 billion by 2100 — is 800 million higher than the 2010 prediction. A combination of factors is driving the number higher, including upward trending fertility rates in sub-Saharan Africa and Southeast Asia and an increase in life expectancy at birth across much of the world."

The new data suggest that India’s population will be greater than China’s circa 2028, making it the most populous country in the world! The overall impact of this size of global population on human well-being is of course dependent on wealth, technology and consumption patterns; new research is now needed for shedding more light on the sustainability dimension of this news story!

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Special Issue in the Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy - Economic Freedom and Regional Economics

Special Issue in the Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy - Economic Freedom and Regional Economics | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Dean Stansel at Florida Gulf Coast University has created a new economic freedom index for U.S. metropolitan areas.... Quoting from his article: "[...] some simple statistical analysis indicated that economic freedom is positively correlated with two measures of economic prosperity. These preliminary results are similar to the findings for nations and states." Here's a short paper opportunity for students in regional  and urban economics - how are the highly ranked cities perform in the post-recession recovery period? Any interesting correlations present here?

 

(Interestingly, urban areas within Idaho are not ranked in top spots: Boise ranks 87th, Idaho Falls 136th, Lewiston 152nd, Coeur d'Alene 238th, Pocatello 244th.)

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Failure to Adapt

Failure to Adapt | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
Detroit is bankrupt - will Philadelphia follow?
Should our city pursue the solutions currently in vogue, or do we look for other approaches?
Michail Fragkias's insight:

Detroit is providing us with a sombering case study of economic collapse at the metropolitan level. So, why did Detroit fail so dramatically? Joel Naroff suggests lack of adaptative capacity, connecting economic decline to failures to adapt Detroit's urban form and land uses to the reality of the last few decades!

 

"If cities do not return to their roots as high-density locations, they will continue to stumble from one financial crisis to another. Cities cannot afford to have few people living in large areas. Services cost too much. It wastes land and exiles residents to dangerous neighborhoods, which businesses avoid. It prevents employing the land for more productive purposes."

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Leading Locations for 2013: Ranking MSAs for Economic & Job Growth | Area Development Online

Leading Locations for 2013: Ranking MSAs for Economic & Job Growth | Area Development Online | Regional Economics | Scoop.it
The cities across America that are emerging from the recession as economic front-runners — recovery is always easiest with a diversified economic base, a trait that almost all of the top-ranked
Michail Fragkias's insight:

- The 'Leading Locations for 2013' report analyzes economic and work force data for 380 U.S metropolitan areas, in an attempt to identify cities that are economic front-runners in the post-recession era. 

- The Boise metropolitan area is emerging from the Great Recession as a top 15% leading location. 

- Boise ranked 60th overall (out of 380 U.S. metropolitan areas) and 12th in strongest short-term economic growth, showcasing the region's dynamism.

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