If Chicago is chosen for the location of Barack Obama’s presidential library, Illinois taxpayers could be on the hook for $100 million. Are the benefits that come with presidential libraries worth the cost? Anthony Clark talks about the economic impact other presidential libraries have had and what might be in store for Chicago if it gets picked.

As part of a Chicago Tribune series on the region’s biggest challenges in 2014, Bob Weissbourd argued for the importance of achieving inclusive economic growth, and identified strategies for better deploying the people and places often left out of the economy.

The Chicago Tribune published this op-ed, authored by Bob Weissbourd, which argues that greater public-private collaboration and a more flexible, dynamic and open institutional infrastructure are necessary to be competitive in today’s increasingly global and knowledge-based economy. It also highlights recent momentum in this direction by the City of Chicago and Cook County.

The Institute for Comprehensive Community Development (ICCD) released the inaugural issue of its journal, including a paper entitled “Lessons from the Field: How 21st Century Community Development Can Inform Federal Policy,” as well as an interview with its author, Bob Weissbourd. The paper addresses the importance and functions of neighborhoods; identifies best practices in neighborhood development; illustrates these using highlights from LISC’s Sustainable Communities program; and offers suggestions for federal policy.

This paper, published in the Williams Review, presents selected results from the first phase of the Dynamic Neighborhood Taxonomy Project. In particular, the paper investigates two key questions relating to the dynamics of neighborhood change: the extent to which change in housing prices at the neighborhood level is driven by change in the region, and the extent to which neighborhoods tend to converge over time.

The increasing attention paid to the region as a key unit of economic activity has given rise to powerful new economic development strategies. By focusing on economic rather than political boundaries, regional approaches can more effectively tackle development issues and devise more comprehensive strategies for economic growth. This conclusion is well articulated in the recent Report of the Strengthening America’s Communities Advisory Committee. However, the regional scope of the strategy does not mean that its focus and interventions can be limited to a regional level. To succeed in the long run, regional strategies must reflect the connections between the region and its cities and neighborhoods – all of the communities which constitute the region. The economic prosperity of the region and of its communities is inextricably intertwined.

To read more, download the Strengthening Communities PDF.