Category Archives : Michigan Economy

Ideas to Transform the Michigan Economy


Place and young professionals

A recent DBusiness article, entitled  “Report: Metro Detroit ranks low in attracting, keeping young graduates”, cites two reports that came to that conclusion. The one I want to focus on in this post comes from the American Institute for Economic Research (AIER). Metro Detroit ranked 48th out of 51 regions with populations of one million or […]


Downtowns and economic development 1

In two recent Atlantic articles James Fallows writes about the renaissance in central city downtowns occurring across America and around the world. (You can find the articles here and here.)  He concludes that vibrant downtowns are an essential ingredient in city success: He writes: “Yes, you can find exceptions. But most of the time, when […]


Explaining persistent low education attainment

Insightful blog by Marc Tucker CEO of the National Center on Education and the Economy. Tucker’s topic is why America for decades has failed to reverse its standing as an international laggard in student achievement. Its not that that reality is unknown or that business, political, and media leadership hasn’t identified it as an important […]


Michigan, Dallas and transit

A friend recently attended an urban development workshop in Dallas. Lots of content on retaining and attracting Millennials. She was surprised (me too when I heard about it) when in a session on transit oriented development the architect of the award winning Mockingbird Station started his talk by thanking the State of Michigan pension fund […]


Lack of transit and poverty

Important and surprising New York Times article entitled “Transportation Emerges as Crucial to Escaping Poverty”. Reporting on research at Harvard the Times reports: In a large, continuing study of upward mobility based at Harvard, commuting time has emerged as the single strongest factor in the odds of escaping poverty. The longer an average commute in […]


Upcoming education forum 2

I’m very much looking forward to participating in the “The Future of Michigan Education” forum on Wednesday, May 27 from 7 to 8:30 pm at the Ann Arbor District Library, 343 South Fifth Ave in downtown Ann Arbor. The forum is sponsored by Re:NEW Michigan. The event will focus on the skills young people will need […]


The case for college for all III

As we explored in our last post if we are serious about raising American living standards we need policies that address both increasing education attainment and that tilt the playing field in favor of employees rather than employers. The chart below is more evidence of why both are needed. It depicts real median wages by […]

Median wages:US,MI,MN

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Autos and Michigan prosperity

For most of the 20th Century Michigan was one of the nation’s most prosperous states. Largely because the auto industry employed hundreds of thousands at high wages. Anchored by blue collar factory workers. Michigan’s prosperity was highly correlated with how well the domestic auto industry––now the Detroit Three––was faring. When the Detroit Three did well, […]