by Tom Gray, Robert Scardamalia
June 18, 2014
In a slow, uneven economic recovery, some cities have managed not only to survive but to thrive. Global centers of technology and energy had a fast start in the recovery and continued to prosper through 2013. Metropolitan areas with higher levels of educational attainment, higher levels of employment in scientific and technical sectors, and a generous share of corporate headquarters also saw economic success. Policymakers must understand the inherent strengths of their jurisdictions and make the most of them. For example, metros with oil and gas wealth can choose to exploit these assets or leave them in the ground. Since health care will be a source of steady growth as the population ages, metros with a reputation for excellence in medicine stand to gain. And whatever comparative advantages a metro can claim, business friendliness matters – a reputation for high costs and overregulation is never a good thing to have.