University of Michigan Gateway Ford School

Bridging the Gap Between Workforce Development and Economic Development: Understanding Cluster-based Approaches

Elsie Harper-Anderson, College of Architecture and Urban Planning

CLOSUP Major Projects Program (FY 2006) award.

A disconnect has been noted between workforce development and economic development efforts in the U.S. Previous studies documented collaboration within both fields but a lack thereof across functional lines. Recent economic decline forced local areas to look inward for solutions to strengthening their economies and creating employment. New research suggests that cluster-based strategies provide a vehicle to achieve both ED and WD goalds simultaneously. This study combines survey results with in-depth interviews to gauge the extent of this strategy's use and whether it is serving as a bridge for the two fields. Understanding the potential of this tool could help us connect people to jobs more efficiently.

Key Findings Report

The following policy report, released in January 2008, is the report of initial findings from this project.

Press Coverage

The University of Michigan News Service released the following article on January 18, 2008 concerning this study.  | 
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University of Michigan Gateway Ford School Gerald R. Ford School of Public Policy