NC Budget and Tax Center

New Report: How to grow an economy that works for all

Folks interested in economic development policy should check out a new report released by the Budget and Tax Center today.  As discussed in the report, the state needs a fresh approach to creating jobs and growing the economy—an updated economic development strategy that fits the demands and challenges of the 21st century. At the heart of this new approach, the primary goal for the state’s economic development efforts should be achieving growth in median household income.

The fundamental challenge facing North Carolina’s economy in the first decades of the 21st century is how to replace rapidly vanishing jobs in declining manufacturing industries with jobs in growing industries that pay enough to allow workers and their families to make ends meet and achieve middle class prosperity.

To meet this challenge, the state should refocus its economic development goals to not just to promote “growth” for its own sake, but to ensure that as many people and regions as possible benefit from growth.  As a result, North Carolina should adopt an integrated, “all-of-the-above” approach to economic development, one that leverages the state’s existing assets and strategies—such as its top-notch research universities and regional clusters of thriving industries like pharmaceutical manufacturing—to support all types of business growth. This involves the expansion of existing businesses and the creation of new homegrown businesses, alongside strategies for attracting outside businesses to the state.

This involves fostering businesses in industry clusters that are not only expanding, but that also pay high wages and offer good benefits, and to target those efforts to the regions of the state that lagging behind.

Finally, a 21st century strategy requires 21st century ways of measuring whether that strategy is succeeding. As a result, policymakers need to use a broader range of indicators beyond economic growth— including median household income and poverty rates—that reflect changes in the standard of living and the ability of families to prosper in the 21st century.

For more details, see the report.

9 Comments


  1. Single Payer Action

    October 24, 2013 at 6:43 pm

    isnt pharmaceutical manufacturing in North Carolina dominated by transnational corporations who are gouging the public??

  2. Single Payer Action

    October 24, 2013 at 6:44 pm

  3. NitWitCharmer

    October 24, 2013 at 6:58 pm

    I understand there is a rapidly growing contingent of employed individuals as a result of horizontal fracking.

    I also understand that NC is blessed with reserves of clean burning natural gas that can be accessed with the technology.

    It would certainly be a disappointment if our state were to turn its back on so many jobs.

  4. Alan

    October 24, 2013 at 7:14 pm

    NWC,

    So why not add the 1000 or so jobs that Grand Wizard McCrory stated would be needed to operate an expanded Medicaid system? Assuming of course, you’re actually concerned about the lack of jobs in the state, vs. campaigning for your paymasters? If the latter, then that would be very unAmerican of you.

  5. david esmay

    October 24, 2013 at 7:34 pm

    Judging by his comments, the NitWit is a victim of full frontal lobel fracking.

  6. Alan

    October 24, 2013 at 7:46 pm

    You can get oil from a vacuum?

  7. NitWitCharmer

    October 24, 2013 at 8:39 pm

    Well, a can’t state that rejects fracking related jobs and the supporting jobs that incurred via support for the working if it says no to clean energy.

  8. Alan

    October 25, 2013 at 10:35 am

    Alphabet soup anyone?

  9. NitWitCharmer

    October 25, 2013 at 3:21 pm

    That it was, Alan.

    My apologies.

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