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Here’s an example of what we are doing at the Purdue Center for Regional Development on Florida’s Space Coast, in the wake of the Shuttle shutdown. 

Agility is key to forming new networks and recovering from large layoffs. We have developed agile strategy disciplines appropriate for complex collaborations in loosely joined networks. Read more about our work on the Space Coast. 

Strategic Doing on the Space Coast

By teaching new approaches to strategy in open networks, we have activated new regional innovation clusters in a matter of months. This happens, because we quickly focus sophisticated collaborations on measurable outcomes and next steps. This video explains the beginning of the process in the Space Coast in April 2010. 

A new clean energy cluster forms

The Space Coast Energy Consortium formed quickly — within two months. Based on the disciplines of Strategic Doing, the cluster leaders quickly designed a strategy agenda and began executing. The slide pack explains this fast “design build” cycle for activating clusters.  

SCEC Cluster Formation-4-2.pdf Download this file

Leveraging the lessons of the auto industry

We learned the value of agile strategies by dealing with the challenges of restructuring the auto industry. By deploying sophisticated collaborations quickly, we guided the Kokomo economy into new directions, This video tells the story. 

A new certification in Strategic Doing

To spread these skills more widely across the country, we will be announcing the details of a new Purdue certification in Strategic Doing in the next few weeks. If you are interested keeping up with this announcement, just join our mailing list

Cross posted at edmorrison.com
Here’s an example of what we are doing at the Purdue Center for Regional Development on Florida’s Space Coast, in the wake of the Shuttle shutdown. 

Agility is key to forming new networks and recovering from large layoffs. We have developed agile strategy disciplines appropriate for complex collaborations in loosely joined networks. Read more about our work on the Space Coast. 

Strategic Doing on the Space Coast

By teaching new approaches to strategy in open networks, we have activated new regional innovation clusters in a matter of months. This happens, because we quickly focus sophisticated collaborations on measurable outcomes and next steps. This video explains the beginning of the process in the Space Coast in April 2010. 

A new clean energy cluster forms

The Space Coast Energy Consortium formed quickly — within two months. Based on the disciplines of Strategic Doing, the cluster leaders quickly designed a strategy agenda and began executing. The slide pack explains this fast “design build” cycle for activating clusters.  

SCEC Cluster Formation-4-2.pdf Download this file

Leveraging the lessons of the auto industry

We learned the value of agile strategies by dealing with the challenges of restructuring the auto industry. By deploying sophisticated collaborations quickly, we guided the Kokomo economy into new directions, This video tells the story. 

A new certification in Strategic Doing

To spread these skills more widely across the country, we will be announcing the details of a new Purdue certification in Strategic Doing in the next few weeks. If you are interested keeping up with this announcement, just join our mailing list
Techbelt_450

The Tech Belt initiative – a region stretching from Pittsburgh to Cleveland — launched an innovation center in Warren, OH this week. 

You can read more about the new innovation center here

Coming in November, Cathering Tumber’s new book– Small, Gritty, and Green,The Promise of America‚Äôs Smaller Industrial Cities in a Low-Carbon World — promises to put the Tech Belt transformation into context. Traditional approaches to economic development and planning will not work well in a this new world. We need more agile approaches that emphasize the value of learning by doing. 

We are starting to see the shift taking place. 

Civic leaders across the region are waking to the vital importance of open, collaborative networks and role these networks play in building a more resilient economy. Sean Safford,  pointed out the vital role that these networks play in his excellent book, Why the Garden Club Could Not Save Youngstown.  You can download a working paper here

This Fall, the Purdue Center for Regional Development will begin its certification course in Strategic Doing. The Lowe Foundation will be launching another certification in Economic Gardening, a promising approach to developing the civic infrastructures we need to support entrepreneurial eco-systems. A number of states are moving in this direction, such as the Grow FL initiative in Florida

In Indiana, our Purdue Center for Regional Development is building out the low cost, high leverage Indiana Business Growth Network

It will be interesting to see of the Tech Belt can master to complexities of open innovation networks.

Tech Belt Initiative white paper.pdf Download this file

Lowe Foundation Economic Gardening.pdf Download this file

Korea_green_initiative

Korea is making impressive strides in establishing a global leadership in green technologies. A year ago, the government established the Global Green Institute. In May, Denmark — another leader in decoupling economic growth from carbon-based energy consumption — became a partner in the Institute. 

Last week, at the first Global Green Growth Summit with the OECD, Korea’s President Lee Myung-bak announced that the government would form a Green Technology Center and a Global Green Technology Award to help nations move toward a “green growth” era. 
You can learn more about Korea’s activities here and here

You can visit the web site of the Global Green Institute
The U.S. has been underproducing college-educated workers for the past three decades. 

That’s the conclusion of a new report from Georgetown University’s Center on Education and the Workforce. Written by Anthony Carnevale, leading authority on the role education plays in our economy, the report offers some sobering conclusions. 

Among them, the report calculates that we will need 20 million additional postsecondary-educated workers by 2025 to respond to future economic requirements and begin to reverse the alarming rise in income inequality. In short, the demand for college-educated workers is growing much faster than the supply. 

You can download the report from this page.

Georgetown Undereducated American.pdf Download this file

The North Carolina Sustainable Energy Association has released a databook on that state’s clean energy businesses. The report is a first-time effort to bring together information across different clean energy sources, including geothermal, wind and solar. Over 1,800 projects are listed. Read more

In addition, the data provide some interesting insights into the development of clean energy projects in rural parts of the state.

You can learn more about the background to the databook here

2011 North Carolina Clean Energy Databook.pdf Download this file

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At the Purdue Center for Regional Development, we are working to evolve more agile planning models under some HUD sustainability and Choice Neighborhood grants. 

So far, this much is clear to me: HUD’s staff is more project or transaction driven, and they have little experience thinking in a longer term strategic or systems context. So, the feds are not likely going to provide much guidance on these new models. 

Second, “logic models” — a primary tool used by the Feds and foundations to evaluate a potential investment — tend to be too simple to capture the complexities of a sustainable economy, which calls for a systems mindset. 

Third, we will need to experiment with new, agile planning approaches, because the traditional, linear planning models are inadequate for building sustainable communities. They are too liner, slow, inflexible and costly. 

The challenge we face involves developing agile, open processes that are guided by experienced collaborative leaders. Balancing open participation and leadership guidance seems to me to be at the heart of what we need to do. 

Finally, we need some simple simple rules to guide us. We need to design a flexible, light-weight, and continuous “planning and doing” process. We cannot manage complexity with a complex planning process. 

These simple rules will enable us to develop clear metrics that have meaning for our communities. Our simple rules should encourage experimentation.  Metrics in a sustainable economy will play a different role than metrics in an industrial economy. 

In an industrial economy, metrics (and the impulse to measure everyone by the same yardstick, e.g., jobs) emphasize control and undercut experimentation. In a sustainable economy — an economy reliant on flexible, adaptive networks — metrics provide a critical tool for learning and evaluation to figure out “what works”. 

We are gaining some other interesting insights. In sustainable development, value creation takes place at two levels. First, value creation emerges as civic organizations develop more sophisticated collaborations. This idea is explored in Steven Goldsmith’s new book, The Power of Social innovation. So, for example, a neighborhood takes a step toward a more sustainable economy if leaders connect career pathways from high schools to entrepreneurs in an emerging cluster, like urban food businesses. 

At a second level of value creation, urban design and planning guides the development of a built environment that supports and amplifies these collaborations. The neighborhood, for example, can create additional shared value by turning a vacant warehouse into a food business accelerator with high energy and water efficiency. A new “learning center” within the accelerator serves as a food processing center for product development, an entrepreneurship and technician training center, and retail distribution hub. 

Value creation comes first from organizational collaboration and, next, from integrating these collaborations into the design for a flexible built environment that reduces the environmental costs and creates new opportunities for turning waste to profit.  

We are focused now on integrating the disciplines of Strategic Doing into these new, agile planning models. 

Some other observations: Sustainable development requires us to develop “portfolios of collaborative investment”.  Managing this portfolio involves initiating pilot projects, experiments that “link and leverage” assets across organizational and political boundaries. (Connecting high school career guidance with entrepreneurial start-ups is an example.) 

To build sustainable, resilient economies, we need to place a lot of small bets. These experiments need to be scaled, based on an evaluation of what’s working. Our metrics will help us evaluate and learn. No single experiment should be so big that its failure will destroy our agile planning process. In other words, we need to manage the downside of each experiment by asking “What could go wrong?”  At the same time, embracing our failures will accelerate our learning. So, the agile planning process needs to be open, transparent, and continuous. In building sustainable communities, the civic process for developing and launching collaborative investments is what matters. 
In Colorado, a group of industry executives came together to respond to a request by U.S. Senator Michael Bennet: Recommend ways to build an innovation economy in Colorado. The industry leaders represented three key clusters in the state: biosciences, aerospace and clean energy. The group has focused on state and federal policies that would support innovation and increased cross-cluster collaboration. 

You can read more about the background of their report here

Coloradans For An Innovation Economy Report.pdf Download this file

Ontario’s bioscience cluster has released a new strategy report. A year ago, the Ontario Bioscience Industry Organization established a team to chart a strategy for development of the cluster. The team, dubbed Ontario Bioscience Economic Strategy Team (OBEST), follows through on a need identified in 2009 to define a strategy for the cluster.

OBEST came up with nine initiatives, five ow which can be implemented among industry partners and four of which call for collaboration between industry and government.

OBEST-Strategy-Report-June-20112.pdf Download this file

The Centert for Urban Studies at Wayne State has released a report on the impact of the Hispanic population in Southeast Michigan.

Visit the Wayne State Center for Urban Studies site here.

You can download the full report here.