Journal of Applied Research in Economic Development

Rethinking Economic and Community Development in the Era of Trump


January's Issue:

Breaking Up (Paradigms) is Hard to Do:

A New Way to Think About State and Local Economic Development

Through the Lens of Forgotten People



Latest Articles

May 2012

Is This Time Any Different?

Our discussion on the New Normal and the Post-Financial Crisis centers chiefly around two important publications. The New Normal label was developed by Mohamed El-Erian, CEO of America’s largest asset manager, PIMCO. The second conceptual position is drawn from Reinhart & Rogoff’s, This Time is Different. El-Erian put his concept together in 2008-2009 period and Reinhart and Rogoff in early 2010. They have been mostly right thus far into 2012.

May 2012

May 2012

The Big Sort

The Big Sort may be one of the most underappreciated books applicable to local economic development. Dealing with how the culture wars emerged in our cities and towns over the last serveral decades, the Big Sort provides some valuable perspective about the links between culture, politics and local economic development.

May 2012

December 2011

December 2011

Richard Florida and the Great Reset

The New Normal has acquired a new label — Richard Florida calls it “The Great Reset”. Ever heard of the “Spatial Fix? Discover what Florida believes to be opportunities arising from our present, rather dismal world. Warning! You must be talented and creative to enter this brave new world. Once again the Old Curmudgeon offers his usual fare of blather, summary, and critique–alongside a few morsels of real information and perspective.

October 2011

Business Climate in the New Normal

The Curmudgeon thinks State Business Climate will be a very prominent economic development strategy during the New Normal period–for the wrong reasons. Sadly, that poor withered soul strongly believes that the concepts and methodologies, which underscore business climate as an economic development strategy, are seriously flawed. In his warped mind he sees the business climate strategy rests upon indexes constructed […]

September 2011

Turning the Page

This month the Curmudgeon is wandering into the politics and local economic development topic. But warning is in order; the pompous fool is not going to concern himself with the obvious everyday practitioner concern of how to best cope with the deleterious effects of political meddling into solid and effective local programs and initiatives. Instead, the old codger is delving into various “theories” of local politics and their implications on local economic development. This is on top of last month’s theme of growth and innovation economics in which the Curmudgeon again focused on “theories”, this time economic. What is with this fascination with “theories”?

September 2011

Looking for Help in all the Wrong Places!ORWhy Urban Political Scientists are Little Help to an Economic Developer

The topic this month is urban political science theories and approaches. The question we pose is if urban political scientists offer any guidance to economic developers in field on how to cope with politics in their daily job? Do they provide some description, case studies, outlines or analysis of the forces which whipsaw practicing economic developers? Do their theories and approaches offer some degree of understanding what goes on politically with the sub-state politics and program administration? This question allows the Curmudgeon to present a review of how urban political scientists conceptualize urban politics in a vein similar to last month’s assessment of the underlying economic theory of innovation and the knowledge economy. At the same time, the review could offer nuggets of assistance to the struggling economic developer. God knows, the economic developer in the field can use some help with politics.

August 2011

Below the Tip of the Iceberg: Innovation and the Knowledge-Based Economy as Political Strategy

Innovation or growth economics is everywhere, but should it be taken at face value as a non partisan solution to present day economic woes and the single best strategy for local economic development? Let’s dissect the National Governors Association report, “Innovation America: the Final Report”. Is the really deep down justification for innovation and growth economics political, not economic? Like an iceberg, it’s what you don’t see that sinks ships.