Economic Development

Economic activity is a crucial part of a healthy community, whether it’s access to quality jobs for residents, business support, or a functioning, diverse range of retail options.

Local Hire: Popular and Controversial

In March, USDOT Secretary Anthony Foxx began moving toward fully implementing “Local Hire,” a new, year long model program...

The Slow Building Movement

Standing at the northern gateway of Milwaukee’s Fifth Ward and the confluence of the Menomonee and Milwaukee Rivers is...

The Cooperative Solution

Cooperatives align closely with the goals and values of community developers and deserve more attention as an economic development strategy.

Investing in Communities Key to Obamanomics

With the Dems convening in Denver, the New York Times Magazine offered us David Leonhardt’s review of ‘Advanced Obamanomics’ on Sunday, August 24. In...

A Gem for New Jersey Neighborhood Revitalization

'A dollar and a dream,' was the phrase I read in a brochure about the starting point for revitalizing neighborhoods through the Neighborhood Revitalization...

“Let’s Refuel America”

According to a report in The New York Times Monday, auto sales are down by more than a million compared to 2007’s 16.2 million...

Thinking Outside the Big Box

Urban centers need to come up with creative solutions to keep their local economies safe from the crushing force of big-box retailers.
A panel discussion about Opportunity Zones in Chicago.

Who Will Benefit From Opportunity Zones? It’s Still Unclear

Who will benefit most from these investments remains the biggest question.

Walt Weighs In On The Economy

So this is weird: December 5 is Walt Disney’s birthday and I get these two separate Disney things in the e-mail from different people...

A Green Job Renaissance?

Even decades after de-industrialization and outsourcing decimated the once-solid, well-paid, empowered blue collar union workforce of the Midwest, jobs are still being lost by...

Baltimore: What The NYT Didn’t See Fit to Print

Editor’s Note: The sixteenth and seventeenth paragraphs of this post have been revised to clarify the controversy over the two research studies mentioned. Johns Hopkins...

Interview with Jay Williams, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development

Jay Williams was the mayor of Youngstown, Ohio, from 2006 to 2011, at a time when Youngstown was attracting notoriety for making the unusual assertion that, rather than longing for its bygone glory days before the steel mills closed, it was going to embrace a vision of becoming a smaller, yet more vibrant city. (See Shelterforce’s “Small Is Beautiful, Again”, for more on this approach and how it affects low-income residents.) Williams is now assistant secretary of commerce for economic development, and administrator of the Economic Development Administration. Prior to joining the U.S. Department of Commerce, Williams served as the executive director of the Office of Recovery for Auto Communities and Workers, and he also served in the White House as deputy director for the White House Office of Intergovernmental Affairs. In this position, he led efforts to engage mayors, city council members, and county officials around the country.

Shelterforce spoke with Williams at the conference of the National Alliance of Economic Development Associations last fall in San Antonio.

Catalysts Turned Stalemates

All too often in cities around the country, a once-clear vision of a “catalytic development project” is easily blurred...

Easing into Investment?

Joe Kriesberg of Mass. Assoc. of CDCs recently took a trip to Cuba with a group of community development colleagues....

Outside Investment or Self-Reliance for Rural Success?

Recently I came across a couple articles that questioned the economic viability of rural areas in large parts of...
A trainee wearing a white hardhat fixes a light fixture in an apartment.

Making a Success of Local Hire

Local hire policies are among the strongest strategies for bringing good job opportunities to disadvantaged communities, but adding more provisions to specifically target those with the most barriers to employment can make local hiring practices even more effective.
A photo of the Rush University Medical Center.

Connecting Companies to Business

A Chicago organization is bringing together local businesses and large institutions to promote economic growth.

Underneath the Surface, a Community Fish Story

Sometimes I learn about the details of a community's development in the most random ways. My family gets together...
aerial view of construction worker sawing board

How Successful is Your County in Accessing Community Development Funding?

some communities in the United States seem much better than others at attracting grants and financing for community development—even after adjusting for their relative needs. Here are some of the surprising trends:

Do New Yorkers Need an Emerald City?

The Christian Science Monitor reported a few days ago on the Bloomberg administration’s plans to redevelop the Willets Point industrial area of Queens (just...