Facebook icon Twitter icon Forward icon

Welcome - Issue 4

Welcome to the latest edition of the EconomicDevelopment.org newsletter. Want to get updates from EconomicDevelopment.org more often? Find us on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, Tumblr, Google+ and Pinterest.

Drop us a line if you have a question or comment about EconomicDevelopment.org. We'd love to hear from you!

- The EconomicDevelopment.org team

Generating creative buzz in post-industrial economies

Industrial Development

By Robyn Spencer

How does a town make the shift from a heavy industry economy to a creative destination? Listing your cultural assets in tourism brochures doesn’t cut it. It’s about capturing and communicating the essence of a town’s creative guts.

Industrial towns may have a certain advantage for generating thoughtful and edgy arts and culture buzz. In the same way that old warehouses have been successfully repurposed into intriguing cultural spaces, the look and feel of grey industrial landscapes in a town can make an interesting backdrop for new art and creativity.

Read more

So exactly what does the customer want? Response from a literary/cultural tourist.

Inspiration typewriter

By Nigel Beale

Steven Thorne’s informative series of posts on ‘place based’ tourism, and his contention that there is a strong desire in many travelers to enrich themselves intellectually and emotionally, struck in me a particularly resonant chord.

I’m a literary tourist.  A member of that ‘band of enthusiasts’ Steven refers to. For the past 6-7 years I’ve had the good fortune of traveling around the world seeking out precisely those kind of enriching experiences mentioned in his posts. As a result of wanting to share these experiences with other book-loving travelers – to make it easier for them to enjoy the same – and to encourage cities to investigate, nurture and celebrate their literary heritage, I launched a website in 2010 at www.literarytourist.com.

Read more

Expatriate attraction: Economic development for ugly towns

Image of a town

By Michelle Madden

Redevelop your waterfront. Beautify Main Street. Leverage your mountains, lakes, trails, parklands, architecture, or climate. Develop your local music/arts/culture/culinary scene, etc. etc. etc. Do these things and your community will transform into a hotspot that will attract and retain young talent, bohemians, hipsters, and all other breeds of desirable residents. This advice is sound but what if your community is, frankly, ugly? Ok, the question is facetious but this blog post has noble intentions: what can a place with few assets and fewer resources do to boost economic development? Such places may get lost in the new wave of asset-based economic development.

Read more

Going Dutch preserves nature, builds prosperity

Nature nurtures.

By Clark Hoskin

Under the blazing Caribbean sun basks an island no smaller than my own Ontario community. The island of Bonaire and the county of Norfolk share few other similarities.  Yes, you can scuba dive in both places. No, not a lot of people have heard of either locale.

So when our dive club visited this Dutch island last fall, it was surprising to see the installation of sewer pipes for the first time in history.

A new treatment plant worth US$35 million is starting to draw waste from resorts, businesses and homes along Bonaire’s coast and inland.  Funds from the Netherlands are building a sewage system to European standards. (Norfolk County regretfully finances five sewer systems with no help from senior levels of government).

Read more

Review: The Boiling Frog Dilemma

By Court Ellingson

“Through the global recession of the past few years, Canada’s economy has done reasonably well. Yet, things are not all that they seem. Like a frog in a pot of warm water, Canadians have not yet realized the danger.” This excerpt from the promotional pages makes it clear that The Boiling Frog Dilemma: Saving Canada from Economic Decline by Todd Hirsch and Robert Roach is a warning bell to Canadians that the status quo simply will not do any longer. Responding to the need for change, Boiling Frogoffers potential solutions for real, positive, sustainable impact.

Anyone that has had the pleasure of attending one of Todd Hirsch’s speaking engagements will understand and appreciate the candid prose and straight-forward approach of the book. Hirsch and Roach do not dwell on the numbers as economists are wont to do. Rather they tell the story of our economy as it is today and, through examples, case studies, and insight from researchers, business managers, economists and interviews conducted across the country, paint a picture of what could be.

Read more