Executive Summary

Lessons from the Past for Urban Policy in the Era of Trump

The stunning election of Donald Trump as president throws the future of urban policy into doubt. During the campaign he promised to bring new jobs and improved infrastructure to the inner cities, but so far he has furnished no details. Some of the strategies carried out by cities and states in the past may offer the incoming administration some guidance.



How Can I Create My Favorite State Ranking?

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So business climate indexes have become a cottage industry within the economic development profession. Reacting to, and explaining why and how their state-community is ranked by business climate indexes has accordingly become a cottage industry among state and sub-state economic developers. The combination of publishing indexes and states and community's reacting to them has not been a pretty picture--in fact, it can be quite challenging and sometimes demeaning. Frankly, a serious measure of cynicism, opportunism, confusion, and manipulation has also entered this dismal business climate index picture. This article examines some of the methodological underpinnings of state economic rankings and what this means for interpreting rankings. State rankings typically are comprised of multiple measures and indicators, and the creators of these indexes face a difficult decision concerning which measures and indicators to include or exclude when making an overall ranking. This issue is compounded when rankings employ different weights to different components of measures and indicators, valuing one measure or indicator over another. We construct a hypothetical state ranking of entrepreneurship and innovation to demonstrate issues with selecting state economic rankings are both pervasive and popular. Continue Reading...