This Policy and Impact Study by the Humphrey School of Public Affairs, State and Local Policy Program at the University of Minnesota is the second in a series of four developed as part of the U.S. Cluster Mapping Project, an effort supported by the U.S. Economic Development Administration. The report illustrates how Minneapolis-St. Paul (MSP) has benefited from applying a cluster approach as a conceptual framework for diagnosing the regional economy and as a platform for joint action to address the challenges identified. The cluster framework provided public and private regional leaders with a common language for understanding regional competitiveness, significantly enhancing the effectiveness of their dialogue. By organizing the policy discussion around clusters, the programs that were developed became targeted enough to have an effect on the issues that mattered for MSP. The cluster-based approach was first applied in workforce development, but over time has been used in other policy areas as well, including in the creation of a broader regional economic development strategy.
Insights for City Leaders from Four Case Studies in the U.S.
Each of the case studies highlighted in this report offers actionable insights to help city leaders galvanize their cluster building efforts. They represent unique insights for the two types of cluster growth models that exist in the U.S.—cluster initiatives and cluster-oriented economic development plans—in different contexts. For city leaders designing new cluster growth strategies, we also offer a set of six general recommendations to ensure the strategies will maximize economic growth.
History tells us that societies succeed when the fruits of growth are broadly shared. Indeed, no society has ever succeeded without a large, prospering middle class that embraced the idea of progress. Today, the ability of free-market democracies to deliver widely shared increases in prosperity is in question as never before. The primary challenge democracies face is neither military nor philosophical.
Silicon Valley Competitiveness and Innovation Project (SVCIP) formed to proactively identify a data-driven public policy agenda to enhance and reinforce the region's competitive advantages in innovation, and ensure that Silicon Valley residents have access to the job opportunities and prosperity linked to growth in innovation industries. SVCIP will periodically update the dashboard of indicators and progress on public policy actions. SVCIP is a collaboration of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group and Silicon Valley Community Foundation.
We assess a prominent argument for local economic policies that favor locally-owned businesses – namely, that locally-owned firms are more likely to internalize the costs to the community of decisions to reduce employment and hence help to insulate cities from adverse economic shocks. We test this argument by examining how establishment-level employment responses to economic shocks are affected by establishment ownership.
Recent years have seen the rapid emergence of a new type of program aimed at seeding startup companies. These programs, often referred to as accelerators, differ from previously known seed-stage institutions such as incubators and angel groups. While proliferation of such accelerators is evident, evidence on efficacy and role of these programs is scant.
America has lost millions of manufacturing jobs since 1980, which has been a serious economic blow to many U.S. metropolitan areas.
In response, metros have pursued an array of economic development strategies, some aimed at protecting or enhancing their manufacturing base, others at diversifying their local economies and attracting new kinds of industries, particularly service firms.
Productive, innovative, competitive economies require smart and simple regulations to prosper. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation’s 2014 Regulatory Climate Index compares and ranks the efficiency of local regulations that apply to small businesses in 10 cities across America.
The Administration is committed to fostering the development of a clean and energy-efficient economy; that is, a “green” economy. This means encouraging the development of green businesses and green products and services, which in turn will create “green jobs.”