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By David Brodwin
Posted on: August 3, 2016
As Republicans gather in Cleveland, it's easy to miss an important experiment taking place a few minutes away from the convention center. Evergreen Cooperatives – an unusual worker-owned business – is emerging from its startup phase. It brings an innovative model of job creation with the potential to scale up and improve lives across America.Evergreen got its start in 2008, when the Cleveland Foundation brought local leaders together to improve lives for low-income residents of the depressed local economy. The founding institutions (which locals call "anchor institutions") include the... read more
By Zach Bernstein
Posted on: July 28, 2016
Let’s say you want to pass a policy on some aspect of the environment, the workplace, tax reform or another important issue. You’ve laid out the legislative blueprint; you know how it would work, how much it would cost, maybe how much it would save. You have all the arguments you need to help it pass. Or so you think.But what if policymakers are skeptical? What if they say your policy is too expensive, or it could cost jobs, or it could hurt business?  The most compelling way to answer those concerns is simple: Bring in business leaders who know the policy is workable because they’re already... read more
By David Brodwin
Posted on: July 25, 2016
No economy can be truly sustainable unless its financial services sector is in good shape. A healthy financial services sector supports the rest of the economy in three ways: It makes capital available to promising startups and growing businesses. It works reliably and consistently – without recurring panics that destroy jobs and savings. And it works efficiently – collecting enough fees and interest to operate but not extracting so much that it undermines the rest of the economy.A good financial system should have something in common with a well-run water utility: Just like everyone needs... read more
By Zach Bernstein
Posted on: July 18, 2016
If there’s one thing Mark Pischea doesn’t want, it’s for the Republican Party to shy away from renewable energy.Pischea, a partner at the Sterling Corporation since 2010, also served as Political Director for the Michigan Republican Party and Deputy Executive Director for the National Republican Congressional Committee. With over 30 years of experience in political and public relations consulting, he currently promotes efforts to increase support for renewable energy among conservative politicians."I'm excited because conservatives increasingly see political value in supporting clean energy... read more
By Mike O'Donnell
Posted on: July 14, 2016
There are several good measures of entrepreneurial vitality here in the United States, but the most revealing one, and my favorite, is the Kauffman Foundation’s “Startup Density” rate. This rate is the number of firms that are less than a year old and have at least one employee besides the owner, divided by the total population (in 100,000s).In 1977, there were more than 250 company startups per 100,000 people. That ratio has been steadily declining over the years, with the biggest decrease ever during the Great Recession. In 2015, there were only 130.6 company startups per 100,000 people.... read more
By David Brodwin
Posted on: July 8, 2016
Reagan began the war on government in 1981 when he said "Government is not the solution to our problem, government is the problem." His trans-Atlantic soulmate, Margaret Thatcher, also took up the charge. 35 years later, that line of attack now stands as an important contributor to both the U.K.'s "Brexit" vote and of the rise of Donald Trump.To understand the connection between antigovernment rhetoric and today's upheavals, it helps to notice that the Trump campaign and the Brexit vote are two manifestations of the same underlying dissatisfaction among the voting public.The British who voted... read more
By David Brodwin
Posted on: July 1, 2016
On May 9, Uber's bluff was called in Austin and a new chapter began in the global economy. Uber and Lyft got into an argument with Austin's government over fingerprinting requirements. The two companies spent at least $8.6 million to push through a local ballot proposition to get their way. When Austin voters spurned them, Uber and Lyft suddenly halted their service, stranding riders and depriving drivers of expected income. (Drivers are suing.)Perhaps Uber thought that Austin residents would capitulate at the specter of life without them, but if so, they thought wrong. "Don't Mess with Texas... read more
By Daniel Barlow
Posted on: June 21, 2016
Our opponents called the idea crazy. We were told Vermont would become a food desert. Even if the bill passed, they told us we would lose the case in court.Those dire and unfounded warnings didn’t stop Vermonters from demanding something that made a lot of sense to them – the creation of a state system to label genetically engineered food being sold in our stores. Farmers, consumers, and business leaders in the Green Mountain State were tired of inaction on the federal level, and wanted to bring some simple and straightforward transparency to our food system.Not only did we succeed, we have... read more
By David Brodwin
Posted on: June 16, 2016
Six months ago, the United States made strong commitments to address climate change at the U.N. climate conference in Paris. In another six months, our politics will decide whether we will honor those commitments or walk away from them.If we stay the course, we will need to slash our carbon footprint without hurting our economy. Almost any action to cut carbon will make for good economics in the long run, since climate change will cost billions if allowed to continue.But what approach to carbon reduction has the best economics in the short term? Probably the best solution is simply to make... read more
By Iva Kaufman
Posted on: June 16, 2016
Bob Dylan wrote those words decades ago, and times really have changed a lot since then. But what about for women? Is the economy really transforming and bettering women’s lives?That question earned a resounding "yes" at the recent Power Shift Forum for Women in the World Economy, an event hosted by Georgetown University’s McDonough School of Business, the MasterCard Center for Inclusive Growth, the Library of Congress and Professor Linda Scott of the DoubleXEconomy. The energy and optimism expressed by attendees resonates with the overall policy agenda and priorities put forth by the... read more