This presentation (also available in Italian upon request) for a regional business conference in Rovereto, Italy describes the growing market for “green” products, identifies business opportunities and sustainability strategies and offers suggestions for regional green strategy development.

This presentation outlines the theoretical framework for market-based community economic development, including a discussion of how market-based strategies work and when they are most effective. The presentation also provides examples of how the framework can be applied to development practice in the areas of retail and financial services.

Delivered by RW Ventures, Chicago TREND and the Columbus Metropolitan Housing Authority, this pair of training sessions were designed to help communities pursuing retail, industrial land use, small business or other economic development projects think more strategically about how those efforts can align with and leverage other local development activities. The morning session used a case study from Columbus to illustrate how the viability of a retail project can be informed and enhanced by interrelated strategies to revitalize the surrounding neighborhood. The afternoon session used an industrial land redevelopment case study from Atlanta to explore how to connect regional industrial opportunities to neighborhood assets and development – sometimes referred to as “economic place-making.”

Originally developed as a two-day training for HUD Choice Neighborhood program grantees, this presentation was delivered to grantees from NeighborWorks America’s Catalytic Grant Program. The training presents the rationale and structure of a new approach to comprehensive neighborhood economic development: “”neighborhood business planning.”” After walking through the effects and implications of the transition to the knowledge economy, the presentation provides a framework for seeing neighborhoods as dynamic systems whose role in the economy is to develop and deploy assets (e.g., workers, businesses) into larger markets.

An overview of neighborhood types and their unique roles within regions follows, along with data on the typical trajectories of different neighborhood types. Sections on each of five market levers (human capital, clusters, innovation and entrepreneurship, urban growth form and governance) show how the development of neighborhood goals, market analysis, strategies and initiatives can create neighborhoods of opportunity in connection with their region. Local-facing issues like housing, retail and other amenities are examined in relation to their effect on creating neighborhoods of choice that certain populations are attracted to, influencing a neighborhood’s type and trajectory. The presentation concludes with an overview of the most comprehensive application of neighborhood business planning to-date: the Greater Chatham Initiative.

Prepared for the Chicago Federal Executive Board, this presentation assesses the nation’s progress over the last 50 years and suggests a new framework for winning the “War on Poverty.” Finding that welfare programs have significantly reduced absolute poverty but are inadequate to combat rapidly growing relative poverty, the presentation proposes a new market-based approach that leverages, rather than supplants, next-economy markets to bring under-invested people and places back into the economic mainstream. The presentation concludes with principles for designing the federal government’s role in this new effort.

This slide deck, presented at the 2014 CEOs for Cities National Meeting, highlights the economic imperative, and offers a framework, approach, analysis and examples for better achieving both prosperity and equity by aligning growth and inclusion. The presentation builds from a convening and ongoing coordination, facilitated by RW Ventures and supported by the Ford Foundation, of leading practitioners building the practice of inclusive regional economic growth around the country. For more on inclusive growth, see the New Growth Innovation Network (NGIN) website at

Developed as part of a two-day training for planning and implementation grantees from HUD’s Choice Neighborhoods program, this presentation walks through the logic and structure of a new approach to comprehensive neighborhood economic development: “neighborhood business planning.” It begins by describing the changes taking place in the knowledge economy, which present opportunities for metropolitan areas and especially urban neighborhoods, and suggest a new approach: neighborhood business planning. The presentation then offers a framework for understanding neighborhoods as dynamic systems whose economic function is to develop and deploy their assets into larger markets.

An overview of neighborhood types and their functions within regional systems follows, including a description of how different types of neighborhoods change over time. Sections on each of five market levers (human capital, clusters, innovation and entrepreneurship, urban growth form and governance) walk through illustrative neighborhood goals, market analysis, strategies and initiatives to drive neighborhood prosperity in connection with its region. Another module focuses on how local-facing issues like housing, retail and other amenities reflect the neighborhood’s position in the region, but also can shape a neighborhood’s type and trajectory. The presentation concludes with an illustrative, high-level sample business plan that brings together all prior components.

These three presentations outline the key drivers of economic growth in the next economy, articulate the concept of “metro-economics” and describe the approach of Metropolitan Business Planning. The first two presentations apply these frameworks in the context of the South Bend and metropolitan Milwaukee areas, while the third presentation, delivered at the Winter meeting of the Mayor’s Innovation Project, considers the questions that regions should answer in order to understand their unique opportunities for economic growth. The South Bend presentation was delivered at the first ever South Bend Economic Summit, co-hosted by the Mayor of South Bend, and the heads of the Chamber of Commerce of St. Joseph County and the Corporate Partnership for Economic Growth. The Milwaukee presentation was delivered at a meeting of the Milwaukee 7 Regional Economic Development Advisory Council.

This report, written jointly by RW Ventures and Innovation Network for Communities, explores opportunities for Chicago-area firms arising from the increasing market demand for energy- and resource-efficient products and services. The first part of the report describes the project’s cluster approach, outlining the theory behind cluster-driven economic growth and identifying the particular criteria used to select promising clusters for the project. Using these criteria, the report narrows from many green sectors of opportunity to the one–energy efficient lighting–ultimately chosen to illustrate green cluster development. The second part of the report digs deeper into the energy efficient (EE) lighting sector, providing an overview of the industry and its current trends and dynamics. The report ends with recommendations for development of Chicago’s EE Lighting sector as well as strategies for regional green economic development more broadly. Also available for download are an executive summary of the report produced by Metropolis Strategies and a copy of Bob Weissbourd’s presentation based on the report.

Bob Weissbourd delivered these remarks as part of the “Connecting to Markets” series sponsored by the Institute for Comprehensive Community Development, the Urban Institute, and the Federal Reserve Banks of Boston, Chicago, Houston, Los Angeles, Minneapolis, Pittsburgh and San Francisco. The speech makes observations about the macro- and metro-economic contexts, and then turns to the implications of these trends for the main topics of the day: neighborhoods, housing markets and the foreclosure crisis.