NotesFAQContact Us
Search Tips
ERIC Number: ED565286
Record Type: Non-Journal
Publication Date: 2015-Feb
Pages: 41
Abstractor: ERIC
All Pennsylvanians Prospering (APP) Together: A Pennsylvania Economic Development Strategy for the Long Term
Herzenberg, Stephen; McAuliff, John
Keystone Research Center
State efforts to boost the economy--economic development--first came to Pennsylvania in the 1950s with the establishment of the Pennsylvania Industrial Development Authority (PIDA) low interest loan program used to recruit manufacturers to Pennsylvania, including devastated coal regions. Since that time, economic development in Pennsylvania and other states has evolved through several waves. The 1980s saw the emergence of "grow your own" strategies, which sought to nurture and grow local businesses rather than recruit businesses from elsewhere. In Pennsylvania, the Ben Franklin Technology Partners (BFTP) and Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs), established in the early and latter part of the 1980s respectively, were at the heart of efforts to grow new businesses and help existing small and medium-sized ones become more productive. The 1990s and 2000s saw the emergence of multi-pronged strategies based on investing in "regional assets." One prong of this "building on strength" approach emphasized mapping and supporting strong, high-wage, regional "industry clusters." Other prongs highlighted assets such as higher education research institutions, unique culture and history, or natural beauty. In recent years, there has been increasing emphasis on "innovation." In part, this takes discussion back to the late 1970s frustrations with the interaction between research universities and industry. In the past, new "waves" of economic development--and new approaches to state collaboration with the private sector--have tended to come at moments of economic distress, such as the mammoth job loss in the Pennsylvania steel industry and the broader erosion of manufacturing in the 1980s. Economic distress created both the demand for new approaches and the political will within state government, business, and the broader community to step back, to diagnose the roots of economic malaise, and to make a fresh start on the state's support for the private sector. The U.S. and Pennsylvania economies are finally recovering from the Great Recession but virtually none of the benefits of that growth have gone to typical families. There is also an urgency about discussions of innovation and global competitiveness. The U.S. has lost ground in technology sector after technology sector and a gnawing concern exists that, at some point, if the production of new products is mostly offshore the U.S. will lose its research advantage. In this context, the present document outlines a new state economic strategy, All Pennsylvanians Prospering Together or "APP Together". The focus here is on the medium to long term. In addition, the report focuses on economic development relatively narrowly defined--the programs largely within the purview of the Pennsylvania Department of Economic and Community Development (DCED), although there is a brief discussion of skills development in the manufacturing sector. This narrow focus means that transportation infrastructure is not discussed. Nor is how the state can maximize the economic payoff of any given level of responsible shale drilling (e.g., by spurring value-added processing or using cheap energy to boost manufacturing). The report recommends that economic development in Pennsylvania going forward embrace the following core principles: (1) invest in public goods that deliver public benefits; (2) the state should invest in growing its own businesses, building on assets, such as dynamic technology industries and higher education institutions; (3) Pennsylvania should pursue a good jobs strategy; and (4) Pennsylvania should invest in her cities, town and landscapes. The appendix provides a list of practitioners interviewed in the creation of this report.
Keystone Research Center. 412 North Third Street, Harrisburg, PA 17101. Tel: 717-255-7181; Web site:
Publication Type: Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: Keystone Research Center (KRC)
Identifiers - Location: Pennsylvania