Heartland

Northern Cities Need to Ramp It Up on Attraction

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The Economist just ran a nice article on “the flourishing Midwest.” Milwaukee in particular gets singled out for some favorable coverage, so congratulations to them.

Many Midwest cities have been doing well. Even the ones with poor headline numbers like Cleveland are seeing areas of strength when you look at a finer grained level. Some of the declines Midwest locations are experiencing are a result of the overhang of previous decline. Change and restructuring is happening in many places.  read more »

Midwest Cities Are Not on the Radar for Migrants

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The Midwest is simply not in the picture when it comes to migration nationally. Even its best performing regions are often migration losers with the rest of the country.

Columbus, Indianapolis, and Minneapolis-St. Paul all have growing populations, and basically healthy economies. Yet all of them are have net migration losses with the country when you look only at migration from out of state.  read more »

The American Heartland’s Position In the Innovation Economy

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The following excerpt is from The American Heartland’s Position In the Innovation Economy, a newly released report written by Ross DeVol, Jonas Crews, and Shelly Wisecarver. Their report highlights the strengths and weaknesses of the American Heartland's position in the 21st century economy.  read more »

Perspectives on Defining the American Heartland

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The following excerpt is from a new report, Perspectives on Defining the American Heartland, written by Ross DeVol, a Walton Family Foundation Fellow. Read the full report (PDF) here.  read more »

What the Census Numbers Tell Us

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The most recent Census population estimates revealed something that the mainstream media would prefer to ignore—the slowing population growth of big cities, including New York. The New York Times, for example, trumpeted Gotham’s historically high population yet failed to mention that the city’s growth is not only dramatically slowing but also, in the case of Brooklyn, declining for the first time since 2006.  read more »

Amazon’s HQ2 Is a Golden Opportunity for the Heartland

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The Wall Street Journal is reporting that Amazon is seeking bids for a second headquarters location that will be equal in size to its current Seattle base. (You can read their RFP here). It would ultimately employ 50,000 people in eight million square feet of office space at an average salary of over $100,000.  read more »

Postcards From the Zombie Apocalypse

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I’m regularly accused of being a doomer whenever I point out the obvious – that many aspects of how we’ve organized our affairs over the last several decades aren’t meant to last. So they won’t. The end of Jiffy Lube and Lean Cuisine isn’t The End. Civilization will carry on without them, I assure you. But when it’s suggested that our current set of arrangements won’t last forever people immediately imagine Mad Max, as if no other alternative exists. Things are going to change. They always have and they always will.  read more »

Red State Conundrum

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How do you raise incomes when your state’s economic appeal is based on low costs?

That’s the basic conundrum facing a number of red states. They rightly talk about their cost climate, touting tax rates and such. But the biggest component of cost for many businesses is labor. Being a low cost state is tantamount to being a low wage one in many cases.  read more »

Subjects:

The Superstar Gap

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The biggest challenge facing many cities in transitioning to the knowledge economy is a shortage of “A” talent, especially true superstars.

All “talent” isn’t created equal. Crude measures such as the percentage of a region with college degrees, or even graduate degrees, don’t fully capture this. It is disproporationately the top performers, the “A” players and superstars that make things happen.  read more »

Where Manufacturing Is Thriving In The U.S.

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Throughout the dismal presidential campaign, the plight of America’s manufacturing sector played a central role. Yet despite all the concerns raised about factory jobs leaving the country, all but 18 of the country’s 70 largest metropolitan regions have seen an uptick in industrial employment since 2011.  read more »