Immigration and Jobs in Your Community: What is the real impact of undocumented workers?

Myriam Quispe-Agnoli, Community and Economic Development Economist, Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta. March 2, 2011. Discussant: Dr. Rosa Hayes, Assistant Commissioner, Information and Analysis, Georgia Department of Labor. Click here for Dr. Quispe-Agnoli’s presentation in PDF format. To see the video of the forum click here.

Small-Business Dynamics and Job Creation: Facts, Obstacles and Best Practices

Brian Head, Economist, U.S. Small Business Administration’s Office of Advocacy. February 2, 2011. Discussant: Donna Ennis, Project Director, Georgia Minority Business Enterprise Center, Enterprise Innovation Institute. Click here for Briann Headd’s presentation in PDF format. To see the video of the forum click on this.

The Green Economy: A Look at today’s green jobs and tomorrow’s growth industries

Jonathan RothwellJonathan Rothwell, Senior Policy Analyst, Brookings Institution, Metropolitan Policy Program. October 6, 2010. Discussant: Tom Croteau, Director, Agribusiness, Food Processing, Energy & Logistics team, Georgia Department of Economic Development. Click here for Dr. Rothwell’s presentation in PDF format. To see the video of the forum click on this (unfortunately, the audio drops out at about the 5:30 minute mark and lasts for almost 2 minutes).

Jobs in the City: The Future of Industrial Districts

Dr. Nancey Green Leigh, professor of City and Regional Planning, Georgia Institute of Technology. September 1, 2010. Discussant: Charles Whatley, Director of Commerce and Entrepreneurship, Atlanta Development Authority. Click here for Dr. Leigh’s presentation in PDF format. To see the video of the forum click on this.

October 8, 2009 Forum

On Oct. 8, Ed Blakely, professor of urban policy at Australia’s University of Sydney, told his audience how communities can craft their economic destinies within the global economy.  Co-author with Georgia Tech’s Nancey Green Leigh of the recently published book, Planning Local Economic Development, Blakely noted that today’s crisis demands new approaches to planning local growth strategies. 

In a wide-ranging presentation, he touched on integrating public and private funding streams, community governance, regional economic research, and strategic sector dimensions.  A multifaceted local economic development finance system, he said, could include not-for-profit organizations, community development corporations, community finance intermediaries, foundation investment groups, environmentally oriented investment funds, faith-based organizations, and community development financial institutions.

A new economy needs new assets, he observed.  It should be creativity-centered instead of product-centered, design-based rather than development-based, and emphasize human capacity over power and energy. 

The Innovations in Economic Development Forum, offered each fall and spring semester, brings together faculty, other researchers, students, economic developers, and policy-makers to discuss leading-edge ideas and practices in economic development and innovation policy.  Presented by the program in Science, Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP), a joint initiative of Georgia Tech’s Enterprise Innovation Institute and School of Public Policy, the forum is co-sponsored by the Georgia Economic Developers Association and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.  Sessions are free and open to the public.  For more information, call Robert Lann at 404.894.3475  or e-mail cprsevents@innovate.gatech.edu.

September 30, 2009 Forum

On Sept. 30, Reagan Farr, commissioner of the Tennessee Department of Revenue, discussed economic incentives and fiscal retrenchment, emphasizing the merits of listening to companies and understanding their needs and concerns, then devising strategies and incentives and crafting legislation.  There have been more tax changes in Tennessee in the past six years than in the previous 30, and a lot of that came from talking with CEOs, he said. 

Tennessee, he said, doesn’t “monetize” incentives, but “We invest in what matters to firms, such as public infrastructure, workforce training, and a business-friendly culture.”  The Department of Revenue, he added, “works hand in glove with the Department of Economic Development.”  In addition to helping fashion appropriate incentives, Farr noted that part of his job is to make sure firms understand all the pertinent details and regulations.   He handed out a “toolkit” describing Tennessee’s diverse incentives, tax credits, grant and loan programs, and technical and planning services.

He also touched on recent successes, such as attracting a Volkswagen plant, and noted that to promote venture capital funding the state created a $120 million tax credit for insurance companies who invest in Tennessee venture capital funds.

The Innovations in Economic Development Forum, offered each fall and spring semester, brings together faculty, other researchers, students, economic developers, and policy-makers to discuss leading-edge ideas and practices in economic development and innovation policy.  Presented by the program in Science, Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP), a joint initiative of Georgia Tech’s Enterprise Innovation Institute and School of Public Policy, the forum is co-sponsored by the Georgia Economic Developers Association and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.  Sessions are free and open to the public.  For more information, call Robert Lann at 404.894.3475  or e-mail cprsevents@innovate.gatech.edu.

January 13, 2010 Forum

Banking On It

Among other things, the recent recession highlighted the difficulty banks face balancing profit with risk, said Andre Anderson with the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta at Georgia Tech’s first 2010 innovation forum in mid-January.   The forum’s theme continued that of last fall—surviving the recession.

Anderson, vice president of community bank supervision, noted the downturn’s impact on community banks in the Southeast was largely a function of real estate.  It’s common for banks to lend money for land development, such as shopping malls, manufacturing plants and housing tracts, and when real estate loses value, banks lose money.  Some banks, he said, were more liberally underwriting loans, thereby assuming more risk. Weaknesses included low or no down payments, less proof of collateral, and less analysis of mitigation strategies.  Now, he noted, despite bankers’ return to normal underwriting standards, demand for loans is down.  And on the other side, banks are saying many business startups lack a feasible business model and sufficient cash to service the debt incurred.

Community banks, observed Anderson, remain a vital part of the community fabric.  But, he added, one reason Georgia has witnessed a higher volume of bank closures is that the state has a large number of smaller banks—some 250—which resulted in wider lending, including the participatory sort where banks invested funds with other lenders, some of whom may not have properly evaluated the borrower.  If a deal went sour, the participating bank’s stake did, too.  Also, according to Anderson, Georgia’s real estate development growth outpaced its population base, resulting in more “rooftops,” such as houses and strip malls, than jobs and people to support the growth.  The economic recovery, he added, has the potential to be slow.

Joining Anderson for a question-and-answer period was Peggy McCormick, president of the Atlanta Development Authority.  The idle cranes around the city serve as a reminder of what’s not happening in Atlanta, she said, adding that most of the big projects have stopped, or at least paused.  “Vacant lots are bad for neighborhoods,” she observed.  But she also pointed to positive activity—some things, such as the Beltline, plans for Fort McPherson, and Atlanta Housing Authority efforts, are moving forward, and the airport remains a magnet.  In addition, home-buying involving both new and existing houses has picked up steam with federal credit backing.  “We’re focusing on what’s needed and what’s working,” she said.

The Innovations in Economic Development Forum, offered each fall and spring semester, brings together faculty, other researchers, students, economic developers, and policy-makers to discuss leading-edge ideas and practices in economic development and innovation policy.  Presented by the program in Science, Technology and Innovation Policy (STIP), a joint initiative of Georgia Tech’s Enterprise Innovation Institute and School of Public Policy, the forum is co-sponsored by the Georgia Economic Developers Association and the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta.  Sessions are free and open to the public.  For more information, call Robert Lann at 404.894.3475  or e-mail cprsevents@innovate.gatech.edu.

Issues in Science and Technology in China

Yu-Wing-YinYu Wing-Yin, University of Macau. April 11, 2005.

Cultural Diversity and Economic Development: The International Village Project

W-Chris-Lazar2Chris Lazar. April 8, 2005 (Chamblee). [International Village]

Making Markets Work for the Poor

Oliver-Monica2Monica Oliver, CARE. March 15, 2005.