CREC Project News and Updates

The State Economic Development Performance Indicators White Paper

October 12, 2016

Given states’ pressures to demonstrate economic development investment impact, The State Economic Development Performance Indicators White Paper, recently published by the Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC) and Smart Incentives, examines commonly used indicators and provides guidance to improve and expand evaluation efforts.

Developed from the Business Incentives Initiative conducted by CREC and Pew Charitable Trusts, state economic development leaders were asked about performance indicators used to evaluate incentives programs. Based on state feedback, data was categorized by business need and type of performance indicator. Of the states that responded, capital access is the dominant category of business need addressed by programs; jobs and investment are the leading indicator type.

Dissatisfied with how common performance indicators – jobs and investment – tell the story of programs’ achievements, state leaders asked for peer advice. All states count jobs, however, this definition varies place to place. A robust jobs indicator should: include a clear definition of (new) jobs; establish a baseline for counting; distinguish between new and existing jobs; include a job quality measurement; explain reporting and verification procedures; and allow for exceptions to the rule. The white paper references two states’ examples including many of these principles, Virginia and California.

Measuring investment as an indicator proves problematic as it includes various metrics across programs and business needs. Investment indicators may include: capital investment, loan or equity investment to a small business, spending to redevelop a brownfield site, or total state assistance to a project.

Three steps states can implement to better select program performance indicators are to develop a clear goal or performance statement; distinguish between indicators that describe outputs and those that describe outcomes; and determine data sources and availability when selecting metrics.

About This Project

California Centers of Excellence for Labor Market Research Training and Engagement Curriculum
Start Date: Dec 2021 — End Date: May 2022

CREC partnered with the California Centers of Excellence for Labor Market Research (CoE), the labor market information arm of the nation’s largest community college system, to redesign their statewide LMI training curriculum. The course resources developed provide instructors with a comprehensive, modular training library for equipping college leadership, faculty, and student-advisory staff with LMI regional […]

Workforce Assessment Study for the U.S. Virgin Islands
Start Date: Feb 2022 — End Date: Jul 2022

CREC is supporting J&M Global Solutions (J&M) and EntreWorks Consulting in performing a workforce assessment study for the U.S. Virgin Islands (USVI). The study is designed to offer a “deep dive” into the USVI’s workforce and the training and education systems that support it. For this project, CREC is providing data and analytical support relevant […]

Counting Credentials in Alabama
Start Date: Jan 2022 — End Date: Mar 2023

Working collaboration with Credential Engine, CREC will conduct research designed to help the Alabama Governor’s Office of Education and Workforce Transformation (GOEWT) in developing an approach to measuring how well the state is doing in measuring its postsecondary educational attainment goal. Through collaborative research with GOEWT and Credential Engine, CREC will connect with Alabama subject […]

Labor Market Assessment for the Carolina Cyber Network
Start Date: Sep 2021 — End Date: Jun 2023

CREC is providing talent demand information and insights to the Carolina Cyber Network (CCN), a coalition of colleges and universities led by Fayetteville Technical Community College and the Montreat College. CCN will use the data to expand and improve the cybersecurity talent pipeline through engagement and alignment with industry demand. The project seeks to supplement […]

Community Capacity Building for Using Treasury State and Local Fiscal Relief Funds
Start Date: Jan 2022 — End Date: Dec 2022

CREC, working with the National Association of Counties and Entreworks Consulting is providing training and technical assistance to communities identifying catalytic projects that use ARPA Local Fiscal Recovery Fund dollars. The project is developing and delivering five virtual training sessions designed for LDDs, local elected officials and their key staff on the ARPA Local Fiscal […]

American Resiliency and Equity Network Initiative (ARENI)
Start Date: Jan 2022 — End Date: Jun 2024

ARENI is a program of the UEDA funded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration to develop national networks focused on addressing economic resiliency and equity and convene EDA University Centers to advance regional economies.  Through this agreement, CREC will provide logistical support to UEDA for regular convenings, online forums, and resource libraries.

Counting U.S. Secondary and Postsecondary Credentials 2022-23
Start Date: Jan 2022 — End Date: Mar 2023

CREC continues its work in generating a national count of unique credentials available for American workers.  The count provides the number of credentials by type and by state.  CREC is conducting research on certain credential segments to better understand patterns of credentialing in certain key industries.  CREC will provide a national report on the status […]

Administrative Datasets on Non-degree Credentials: Creating and Analyzing a Repository National Science Foundation/George Washington University
Start Date: Sep 2021 — End Date: Jul 2023

CREC is collaborating with George Washington University Institute of Public Policy (GWIPP) to support the National Science Foundation’s (NSF) National Center for Science and Engineering Statistics’ (NCSES) use of administrative data to analyze training and education of the nation’s skilled technical workforce (STW). The limitations of survey data in this field necessitates the utilization of […]

Increasing Labor Market Data Use for Career Pathways Intermediaries and Practitioners
Start Date: Oct 2021 — End Date: Dec 2023

CREC is supporting support cross-state labor data linkages by increasing the data capabilities (e.g., training; access) among Gates-supported regional Pathways intermediaries through state agency partnerships that galvanize systems-level change. CREC seeks to enable secure access to individual-level outcomes data through aligned data sharing agreements and strengthening relationships between approximately 14 Pathway intermediaries and their respective […]

Developing Regional Ecosystems to Support Recovery-to-Work Part II
Start Date: May 2021 — End Date: Dec 2023

CREC is providing technical assistance and peer-based learning to assist local development districts (LDDs) in building regional collaboration to help those in recovery from substance use disorder (SUD) transition to or maintain work opportunities. With support from the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) and partnering with the Development District Association of Appalachia (DDAA), CREC is supporting […]

About the Client

Appalachian Regional Commission

The Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC) is a regional economic development agency that represents a partnership of federal, state, and local government. Established by an act of Congress in 1965, ARC is composed of the governors of the 13 Appalachian states and a federal co-chair, who is appointed by the president. Local participation is provided through multi-county local development districts.