Community & Economic Development

Community and economic development

Access all of our programs about community and economic development from Erie to abroad

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THE WAR O N DRUGS: AN EPIC POLICY FAILURE

Dan Morhaim

June 16, 2021

Overdose deaths and drug abuse are at all-time high. Drug wars are ravaging our communities: rural, suburban, and urban. Costs to healthcare, education, families, businesses, and taxpayers continue unabated. Narcoterrorism is destroying our neighboring countries. The economics support overseas enemies while corrupting people and institutions domestically. How did we get here, and what can be done about this?

     

Dan Morhaim, M.D. brings a unique perspective to this compelling topic as a front-line emergency medicine physician for 40+ years, Maryland state legislator for 24 years, faculty at Johns Hopkins School of Public Health for 16 years, and author of The Better End (www.thebetterend.com).

To watch this video on YouTube, click HERE

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FOOD INSECURITY CRISES AT HOME AND ABROAD: WHY BIDEN MUST LEAD ON BOTH

Cailtin Welsh

March 15, 2021 

Food security forecasts project that the Covid-19 pandemic will have caused the most severe global food security crisis in recent history both nationally, with potentially upwards of 16 percent of the population becoming food insecure, and globally, with 270 million pushed into acute food insecurity in 2020 alone.

"How the Biden administration responds to each will affect food security—and the U.S. reputation as a global leader—for decades to come," writes Caitlin Welsh, director of the Global Food Security Program at the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS) in Washington, D.C.

In conversation with JES Vice President Ben Speggen, Welsh reviews impacts to domestic and foreign food security in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic, update where both stand in 2021, and address why she calls for the Biden administration to not approach these challenges "either/or" but to understand how the U.S.'s "ability to lead globally hinges on our ability to address challenges at home."

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE

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INNOVATIONCITY BOTTROP – A SUCCESSFUL EXAMPLE OF ENERGY EFFICIENT AND CLIMATE FRIENDLY URBAN REDEVELOPMENTS

Lord Mayor Bernd Tischler

March 3, 2021

Join Bottrop, Germany Mayor Bernd Tischler as he explains what InnovationCity is and the impact its had as an organization of a successful process of urban redevelopment accompanied by technological and process innovations that is based on a broad and solid backing by the citizenry.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE

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LOCAL AND STATEWIDE PERSPECTIVES ON ENVIRONMENTAL JUSTICE

Sarah Bennett, Gary Horton, and Allison Acevedo

February 25, 2020

Erie Coke closed its doors in December 2019 after years of environmental violations that disproportionately impacted Environmental Justices communities. In September 2020, Erie County declared racism as a public health crisis. Join Sarah Bennett, PennFuture’s Campaign Manager for Clean Water Advocacy in the Lake Erie Watershed, Gary Horton, Urban Erie CDC President, and Allison Acevedo, Director of the Office of Environmental Justice at the Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection, to learn what environmental justice is, how it impacts the Erie community, and what can be done to create a future where low income people and people of color are no longer disproportionately impacted by environmental degradation and pollution.

To watch this video on YouTube, click HERE

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EVALUATING THE COVID-19 ECONOMY: REVIEWING 2020 AND UNPACKING 2021

Dr. Kenneth Louie

February 22, 2021 

As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to impact global, national, and local economies, where do we stand now? What has the impact been? What has changed? Where does Erie stand compared to the rest of the country? Find out in this conversation with Dr. Kenneth Louie, director of the Economic Research Institute of Erie (ERIE) who compiles the Erie Leading Index (ELI) as we review 2020 and unpack developments in 2021.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE

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A FOREIGN POLICY FOR AMERICA'S LOCAL GOVERNMENTS: THE NORTHERN VIRGINIA MODEL AND WHAT PLACES LIKE ERIE, PENNSYLVANIA CAN LEARN FROM IT

Dr. Dale Medearis

February 11, 2021

Join Dale Medearis as he posits that for too long, international work by local governments has failed to meet its full potential because of over-reliance on an obsolete business model of cultural diplomacy that is grounded in the notion that the United States had nothing or little to learn from other countries. As a consequence, city and county governments fail to plan global engagement strategically and the face of international work at the local level is that of frivolous travel or "meet-and-greet" events that produce few or no outcomes.

As local governments continue to become drawn more into the global arena. As global connectivity tightens and the demands on services from local governments grow, re-formulating international affairs towards something more purposeful will become an absolute necessity – not an option. For over 20 years, the Northern Virginia Regional Commission (NVRC), a regional council of governments representing the 13 localities and 2.5 million people of Northern Virginia, has practiced a special model of strategic global interaction with potential adoption for other localities around the country.

To watch this video on YouTube, click HERE

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OUR WATER, OUR FUTURE: A LOOK AT THE COMMON AGENDA FOR PROTECTING THE LAKE ERIE WATERSHED

Sarah Bennet, M.S.

December 21, 2020

Erie is situated on the 11th largest freshwater lake in the world and water is the region’s most important natural resource. However, there are significant threats to water quality that need to be addressed in order to ensure a thriving, sustainable, equitable future for the region. PennFuture and 12 regional organizations joined together to develop "Our Water, Our Future: A Common Agenda for Protection Pennsylvania’s Lake Erie Watershed." The document prioritizes threats to clean water in the Erie region and recommends solutions at all levels of engagement to ensure that these resources are protected now and for future generations.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE

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PA SCHOOL FUNDING: BARRIER FOR ECONOMIC GROWTH/COMMUNITY REVITALIZATION IN ERIE COUNTY & THROUGHOUT PA

Panel Discussion

December 8, 2020

The Jefferson hosts an expert panel discussing Pennsylvania's K-12 funding system and potential solutions to help level the playing field for students, thereby removing barriers affecting student achievement, property values, and overall community revitalization.

Panelists: Donna Cooper, Executive Director, Public Citizen's for Children and Youth and Former, PA Secretary for Policy & Planning, Rendell Administration; Ira Goldstein, Ph.D., President of Policy Solutions, Reinvestment Fund; Jeffrey Beer, Esq., Broker of Record, Keller Williams Real Estate, Doylestown; Brian J. Polito, Superintendent of Erie's Public Schools; and moderator Ben Speggen
The program is in partnership with ReadyNation.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE

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PATHS TO RENEWED PROSPERITY FOR GREAT LAKES COMMUNITIES

John Austin, MPA

October 22, 2020

Despite lingering popular misconceptions, the Great Lakes and Upper Midwest region is not an economic monolith of struggling older industrial cities and rural hinterlands. Many communities have shed their agricultural and industrial shells and found new economic success in a globalized, knowledge and technology-driven economy. Austin shares findings from A Vital Midwest: The Path to New Prosperity, his 2020 report from the Chicago Council on Global Affairs. It provides a fresh analysis of the Great Lakes economy and the varied paths by which the region's older industrial communities, similarly situated to Erie, have turned an economic corner. Austin also discusses the new challenges and opportunities for economic growth in a Covid-19 reshaped economy.

John Austin is the Director of the Michigan Economic Center; a Nonresident Senior Fellow at the Brookings Institution & Chicago Council of Global Affairs; a Research Fellow, W.E. Upjohn Institute; and a Lecturer on the Economy, University of Michigan.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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THE URBAN DIGITAL DIVIDE DEFINED

Matt Wiertel

October 15, 2021

The broadband and technology skills gap that exists in U.S. urban areas often decides whether individuals can become part of the connected digital economy and education. Due to Erie's demographics, broadband adoption in urban areas trails national averages and creates a larger challenge for the community at large. Raimy Fellow Matt Wiertel dives into this multi-faceted issue, presents possible solutions, and forms a call to action to assist a technologically marginalized population in Erie.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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A SHARED HERITAGE: PEOPLE AND PLACES OF AFRICAN AMERICAN HERITAGE IN ERIE COUNTY

Mr. Johnny Johnson and Dr. Chris Magoc

September 30, 2020

This presentation, A Shared Heritage: People and Places of African American Heritage in Erie County, offers an overview of a newly launched community history project. The centerpiece of A Shared Heritage is a driving and walking tour of 29 sites of significance related to African American history in Erie County from slavery through the Civil Rights era. Along with the tour is a website featuring a number of other supplemental educational resources also previewed in the presentation. 

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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LAKE ERIE: A CALL TO ACTION

Dr. Judith Lynch

September 24, 2020

Outbreaks of Harmful Algal Blooms and E. coli contamination have been documented for years in Lake Erie. Despite proof of their injurious impact on animal life, human life, and our economy, they continue.

After the recent release of her report on these growingly severe threats, Jefferson Scholar-in-Residence Dr. Judith Lynch argues that it is time to stop talking and start acting.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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REVERSE MORTGAGES: WHAT SENIORS AND POLICY MAKERS NEED TO KNOW AND HOW THE COVID-19 PANDEMIC IS IMPACTING THE HOUSING MARKET

Dr. Ira Goldstein, Dr. Mike Norton, and Atty. Colin Weidig

August 19, 2020

Join us for a discussion about Erie-specific data and maps on reverse-mortgage lending. This data was designed to help seniors better understand the complexities, risks, and advantages of reverse mortgages. This program also looks at new rules that protect seniors with a reverse mortgage from foreclosure and show data about who borrowed with reverse mortgages in the last recession and where many reverse mortgage eligible seniors live today.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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A CONVERSATION WITH KRISTEN ZEIBER: PEDESTRIAN, BIKE LINKS TO BAYFRONT NEEDED MORE THAN EVER

Kristen Zeiber, M.S.

June 17, 2020

The master plan for the Bayfront Parkway Pennsylvania Department of Transportation was released in April 2020, highlighting more consideration for bike and pedestrian connections along the Bayfront.

Kristen Zeiber, Project Manager for the Cleveland Urban Design Collaborative, responded to the PennDOT plan in the report recently released by the Jefferson Educational Society headlined, Pedestrian, Bicycle Links to Bayfront ‘Needed More Than Ever.’”

Zeiber discusses her new report as well as the PennDOT plan, including the challenges and opportunities of rethinking the parkway, the context of the parkway project in this age of the coronavirus, its special challenges, and the desire of bicyclists and pedestrians to better use of bayfront amenities in this program.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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EVALUATING THE ECONOMIC IMPACT OF COVID-19

Dr. Kenneth Louie

June 9, 2020

The Economic Research Institute of Erie (ERIE) issued a Special Issue of the Erie Leading Index (ELI) on May 1, 2020 to analyze the local economic impact of the COVID-19 pandemic January through March. 

With the Bureau of Labor and Statistics' April data set for local, Metropolitan Statistical Employment and Unemployment being released on June 3, Dr. Kenneth Louie, ERIE director, offered insight on June 9, 2020 to the updated numbers and the effects of COVID-19 on the local and national economies. 

What's changed? Where does Erie stand compared to the rest of the country? Find out in this conversation as we unpack the new developments.

To watch this program on YouTube, Click HERE!

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PA Democratic Debate: PA State senate district 49

Democratic Candidates

May 21, 2020

The Jefferson hosts a debate with Democratic Candidates for PA State Senate District 49. Watch to find out these candidates' platforms and goals as we all prepare for election day on June 2, 2020.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!
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COWORKING: COMMUNITIES OF PROFESSIONAL AND PERSONAL INTEREST

Sean Fedorko

May 20, 2020
Coworking has become a popular subject of discussion with the rise of the freelance economy, remote work, entrepreneurship, and as people seek new ways to feel connected to one another.
Sean Fedorko, Co-founder and Managing Director of Radius CoWork, provides insights into the history of Erie’s coworking community, Radius CoWork, and its role in Erie’s entrepreneurial ecosystem. We’ll also cover how the pandemic has impacted changes in coworking communities and the industry.
To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!
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THE FUTURE OF RURAL AMERICA: HOW DAKOTA RESOURCES IS PLANNING FOR TOMORROW IN A TIME OF CRISIS

Dakota Resources' Paula Jensen and Mike Knutson

May 5, 2020

How are mindsets shifting about the rural narrative in the 21st century? What is the heartland doing when it comes to brain gain and talent attraction?

Dakota Resources' Paula Jensen and Mike Knutson in conversation with Jefferson Vice President Ben Speggen, explore answers to those questions and more and talk about why networking matters and how the COVID-19 crisis has impacted the future of rural America.

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NECESSARY INTERRUPTIONS: ENCOUNTERS IN THE CONVERGENCE OF ECOLOGICAL AND PUBLIC HEALTH

Dr. Aaron Kerr

April 22, 2020

Regions have consented to social distancing in an effort to procure a future public health. This has involved radical interruptions to conventional living, interruptions which will result in pronounced adaptations in modern existence in the very near future.

The machinations of global carbon civilization have persistently resisted these sorts of interruptions on the grounds of economic development. The diseased inanimate earth has not evoked the urgency that diseased humanity has. The interruptions that now befall all of us can be creatively assessed and leveraged in the service of ecological awareness and a deeper solidarity with both nature and culture; a healthy convergence promoting inter-generational cooperation.

Healthy intellectual responses to interruptions involve openness, wonder, receptivity, and contemplation. Dr. Kerr explains how these resources are the indispensable intellectual equipment necessary for our common future of health.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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EXPLORING THE REPORT: "WHY ERIE'S DOWNTOWN IS A PROXY FOR THE NATION: THE FUTURE OF MAIN STREET BUSINESSES AMIDST THE COVID-19 CRISIS"

Bruce Katz and Ben Speggen

April 9, 2020

The impact of COVID-19 on small businesses and the places where they co-locate and concentrate — downtown, Main Streets, commercial corridors — has been immediate and devastating. In their recent report, "Why Erie’s Downtown is a Proxy for the Nation: The Future of Main Street Businesses amidst the Covid-19 Crisis,” Bruce Katz, the Founding Director of the Nowak Metro Finance Lab at Drexel University and a Partner with Accelerator for America, and Jefferson Vice President Ben Speggen, examine COVID-19's impact on businesses in Erie and make the case for how Erie serves as a model for the country in examining the impact and planning the recovery.

To watch this program, click HERE!

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METRO 100 REVISITED

April 8, 2020

The Jefferson revisited lectures from "Metro100: Erie at a Crossroads." Take a look at the program so you can watch, remember, and learn all you can about what we accomplished during the Metro100 in 2016.

In 2016, the Jefferson hosted czb, LLC. Planning Firm Founding President Charles Buki and czb Associate Planner Peter Lombardi along with James Fallows, a national correspondent for The Atlantic, for a discussion of the City of Erie’s recent comprehensive plan: Erie Refocused.

At the unveiling of the plan, Buki wrote an open letter to Erie civic leaders, calling for community wide discussion of the plan to best consider adoption and implementation strategies. To ensure that the plan was discussed and that leaders could connect to its authors, the Jefferson hosted the czb, LLC. Planners. Adding James Fallows helped the plan garner national attention, as he wrote about the day’s happenings in The Atlantic.

This program was recorded by MenajErie Studio.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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FOLLOW UP ON CORONAVIRUS-COVID 19 COMMUNITY CONVERSATION

LECOM Health

March 24, 2020

LECOM medical specialists discuss the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic and its regional implications.

In partnership with LECOM, the Jefferson presents a “Follow-up on Coronavirus Conversation” featuring three medical specialists:

Dr. Monika Murillo, M.D., Clinical Assistant Professor of Infectious Diseases;
Dr. Melanie Dunbar, Director of Behavioral Health;
and Dr. James Lin, President of LECOM’s Institute for Successful Aging.

Dr. Murillo’s office is at LECOM Medical Fitness and Wellness Center. A graduate of the University El Bosque, she completed her residency from the University of Illinois at Chicago/Christ Medical Center.

Dr. Dunbar, an Erie native, is a psychologist and licensed professional counselor. With 15 years in behavioral health, her expertise includes mood and anxiety disorders, trauma, grief and loss, personality disorders, and dialectical therapy.

Dr. Lin, an expert in senior care, is a veteran practitioner and administrator at LECOM. He emigrated from Taiwan with his family as a youngster and went on to study at New York University and the Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

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CORONAVIRUS: A COMMUNITY CONVERSATION

LECOM Health and Erie County Department of Health

March 13, 2020

The Jefferson Educational Society has suspended its live-audience public events as its team continues to monitor the spread of coronavirus/COVID-19.

Representing the Erie County Health Department is Rich Knecht, the department’s former Public Health Preparedness director, who has been contracted to assist the Health Department with the COVID-19 outbreak. Before retiring in 2013, Knecht led the Health Department’s response through white powder incidents, monkeypox, smallpox, swine flu, H1N1, SARS, bird flu, and several other incidents and potential outbreaks.

Medical professionals who are speaking include Monika Murillo, M.D., clinical assistant professor of Infectious Diseases at LECOM; Danielle Hansen, D.O., vice president of Acute Care Services at Millcreek Community Hospital and associate director of the LECOM Institute for Successful Aging; and James Lin, D.O., president of the LECOM Institute for Successful Aging.

This program is co-sponsored by LECOM Health.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

To take a look at the PowerPoint Presentation affiliated with the lecture, click HERE!

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HISTORY OF ERIE COUNTY'S RESPONSIBILITY OF THE POOR

Dr. Judith Lynch

March 12, 2020

Erie County was created by the State in 1800. One of the first responsibilities it was given was the care of the poor, a state-imposed responsibility that the County still carries. This program traces the evolution of the County's care of the poor, from the creation of the Overseers of the Poor, to Institution Districts, to workhouses, almshouses, and tuberculosis sanitariums. It notes the changing attitudes about the treatment of subsections of the poor. It describes the impact of the Great Depression and the Roosevelt policies, in addition to chronicling the impact of Lyndon Johnson's 1960s programs of Medicaid and Medicare and the scope of the current human service budget.

To watch this program on YouTube, click HERE!

To take a look at the PowerPoint Presentation affiliated with the lecture, click HERE!