Workshops to Teach Building and Sustaining a Strong Local Economy

By Good, Latricia | Nation's Cities Weekly, October 23, 2006 | Go to article overview

Workshops to Teach Building and Sustaining a Strong Local Economy


Good, Latricia, Nation's Cities Weekly


With state and national economies receiving frequent attention from experts and analysts around the country, the structure and influence of local economies often goes overlooked. But with local economies having a significant impact on citizens' day-to-day lives, local leaders play a unique role in improving economic vitality and competitiveness locally as well as advancing the United States' economic development goals.

In an effort to give delegates the resources and tools needed to build and sustain a strong economy in their cities and towns, NLC will sponsor a workshop series, "How to Keep Your Economy Strong," at its Congress of Cities and Exposition in Reno, Nev., Dec. 5-9. Examining ongoing and emerging fiscal challenges facing leaders at the local level, experts will highlight trends affecting local economies and discuss innovative approaches to effectively confront these challenges.

The success of a local government economic development plan is significantly dependent upon a city's ability to adapt to the rapidly changing national and global economic environment, according to some experts. Therefore, local leaders must think strategically about how to structure their economic development plans, taking into consideration their cities' unique conditions and how they help or hinder its economic development efforts.

Through this workshop series, delegates will learn how to assess their cities' unique needs in order to design and implement a targeted local economic development strategy. By actively examining their economic base and understanding their cities' distinctive obstacles to growth and investment, local leaders can be successful at building on and maintaining their cities' economic strengths.

Another key tool many experts say can effectively build a strong local economy is working collectively with community stakeholders. By enlisting the expertise and input of public, business and nongovernmental partners, city officials can work comprehensively to create better conditions for economic growth within their local communities.

Experts presenting during the workshop series will provide examples of local governments that are thriving in today's global economy and how they have managed to rely on a variety of community investments to achieve economic goals. …

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