Sarah Rahman

The Business Case for Clusters
October 07, 2010

The academic case for clusters (mounted by the likes Michael Porter and others) already exists. The policy case (frequently made by us in Metro Program papers and on these pages) also exists. Now, the business case for cluster strategies and federal and state cluster policies has been gaining prominence, and that is what was recently asserted really powerfully by Eli Lilly and Co. President and CEO John Lechleiter. At a major event on innovation clusters last month, Dr.

The National Clean Energy Potential of the Mountain West
September 02, 2010

The nation is urgently searching for ways to transform its energy system with cleaner alternatives.

Energy (and Economic) Transformation Come to the Philadelphia Navy Yard
August 27, 2010

We’ve long liked the Department of Energy’s new Energy Innovation Hubs program, with its resemblances to our energy discovery-innovation institutes idea.

SBA Gets Into the Clusters Business
July 14, 2010

The Economic Development Administration is in.  So is the Agriculture Department.  Now, the U.S.

The Great Lakes and Clean Energy--A National Win-Win
June 30, 2010

America needs to transform its energy system. The Great Lakes region possesses what may be the nation’s richest complex of innovation strengths--research universities, national and corporate research labs, and top-flight science and engineering talent. Is there a deal to be done?

America (Begins to) COMPETE
June 02, 2010

Notwithstanding the nightmare of the spreading Gulf of Mexico oil spill, there was good news last week as sensible Washington folks headed to the beaches for the long weekend. Late on Friday, the House of Representatives passed an important piece of U.S.

Arizona’s Immigration Situation: Just the Facts
May 24, 2010

Amid all the impassioned support for and angry backlash against Arizona’s new law to curb illegal immigration, the facts on the matter are being totally obscured. A new short brief  by the Morrison Institute for Public Policy at Arizona State University finds that while some public policy claims about the state’s illegal immigration situation are well-founded, others are demonstratively false or not clearly established from given data. To help clear-up the public policy debate, the brief ticks off nine clarifications, from the popularity of the state’s new bill to the impact of undocumented i

Prizing Innovation
May 05, 2010

Here’s something interesting: The U.S. Department of Commerce’s Office of Innovation and Entrepreneurship and its Economic Development Administration announced something genuinely fresh earlier this week--a competitive challenge grant aimed at calling out the nation’s best ideas for technology commercialization and entrepreneurship. How cool is that?

The Jobs Bill: The Consequences of Leaving Out States and Cities
March 01, 2010

The Senate passed its relatively modest $15 billion “jobs bill” last week, with reminders from Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid that that another legislative package would soon pick up some of the elements missing from this latest round of policymaking.  Will state and local aid make it off the list of possible next items—like an extension of jobless benefits and additional tax breaks—into a new bill?  At least some national plans for economic recovery may actually depend on it.  With huge budget shortfalls forcing states and localities to lay-off employees and freeze hiring, many governments

Budget 2011: Joined-Up Government
February 12, 2010

Last week we noticed the spread into multiple federal agency budgets of FY 2011 program proposals aimed at supporting regional industry clusters--the geographic concentrations of interconnected firms and supporting organizations that play such an important role in enhancing regional economic performance. Yet that is just one spreading governance "meme" on display in the Obama administration's second budget.