A Defining Moment

July 28, 2014

As you know from the title of this blog, we believe that economic development matters. Therefore, defining economic development is important, too. A proper definition of success leads to clearly defined goals and objectives, and hopefully focuses the limited resources of our national, state and local organizations on what matters most.

I encourage you to read this Forbes article that examines the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s recently updated definition of economic development. The article, and the definition now posted on the EDA’s homepage, alludes to the changing nature of economic development – from a hunter-gatherer mentality to that of a gardener who nurtures an environment where businesses thrive.

As an economic development practitioner, I believe it is critical to create an environment for the private sector to start new businesses, grow existing businesses, and invest in technology and workforce. I also believe that competition is healthy and critical for economic success. Capital will flow to the most competitive locations based on access to markets, the presence of talented people and the ability to maximize return for investors.

I applaud the EDA for furthering a “new” definition of economic development and creating dialogue about our field. We’d like to know what you think. Please share your thoughts below.

Kenny McDonald

One Columbus Update

  • Recent findings from The National Center for the Middle Market, a partnership between GE Capital and The Ohio State University’s Fisher College of Business, show that Central Ohio middle market companies are lagging national trends. Please take a few moments to complete this survey, data from which will be used to undertake important policy discussions.
  • The Ohio Third Frontier Open Innovation Incentive Program connects businesses with a third party organization to quickly explore resources for overcoming technical obstacles, product advancement challenges, service or process improvements hurdles. Click here to learn how to take advantage of this program. Originally scheduled to end August 2014, the program may be extended through January 2015.