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Welcome - Issue 23

Welcome to the EconomicDevelopment.org newsletter! 

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The Higher ED Blog: What’s new in economic development research

Dartmouth University

By Michelle Madden

The goal of the Higher ED Blog is to put cutting-edge economic development research into the hands of practitioners. We typically do that by giving our graduate and professional students an opportunity to publish short-and-sweet versions of their academic papers but for this article, we’re doing something a little different. We went right to the source and reviewed the latest issue of Economic Development Quarterly, arguably the most relevant academic journal to North American economic development practitioners. Here are some of the highlights from 95 page volume (you’re welcome).

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Overcoming the tyranny of stakeholders

People in a meeting

By Ed Morrison

An academic leader recently connected with us, frustrated. After two years of trying to implement large-scale system change within her university, her team had little to show for it. A relatively small initiative involving 30 students was underway, but little else.

When I asked her to describe this process, her strategy, she eloquently explained how higher education must transform. How technology was  “flipping” the classroom.  How faculty needed to change the way they taught.

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How to attract people to your city (and it’s not just about jobs)

Runner in a park

By Neil O'Farrell

Who came first, the employer or the employee?

Ask most people on the street and they would probably give a straight-forward answer: logically the employer came first, and the employee followed. That would make sense, after all, because much of what we hear from the realm of economic development revolves around job creation. As with the well-publicized dogfight to host Tesla’s Gigafactory, attracting large job creators appears to be the new winning ticket for many municipalities. People follow jobs. Right?

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Data, data, everywhere and no one knows from where: Economic developers and their sources

Chart on a chalkboard

By Mary Kuna

Whether or not economic developers realize it, they are considered central sources for community data.  Constantly asked about population numbers, labor force statistics, projected industry growth and business economic impact, the economic developer becomes the gatekeeper of all things numeral.  This aspect of the economic developer’s work is critical.  Gathering, analyzing and communicating this cornucopia of data is vital in making decisions about the direction a community must take in their quest for economic vibrancy.

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Create win-win-win results with employer engagement

Business meeting

By Trudy Parsons

There's no universal solution to bringing job seekers and employers together. It’s not simply a relationship between labour supply and labour demand; it requires the commitment of government to support relevant programs and services and the creativity of intermediaries to help employers access local talent.

Employment support networks, often non-profits, are mandated to help employers access local talent to meet skill needs. For job developers, career developers, and local employment support organizations, being equipped with the right tools is a key success factor.

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The Higher ED Blog: Everyone is rushing to love entrepreneurs… and this means what in rural municipalities?

Man running

By Rebecca Mustard

Newsflash: the global economy is changing.

This is not particularly new news for anyone. We have all been watching as traditional driving economic sectors restructure and offshore, changing how things have always been done. All over the news is the employment decline in manufacturing and agricultural sectors alongside a growth in high tech and knowledge based industries. What is interesting is the impact of these structural changes on geographic locations. Manufacturing and agriculture have been the mainstay of rural economies, and the losses are felt in these communities, while the growth in high tech and knowledge based industries is concentrating in urban centres. We are seeing a shift in the geographic location of economic prosperity. So, what do we do in times of crisis? We look for an alternative.

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