Few states possess as many of the assets needed for innovation-driven growth as Pennsylvania. Powerhouse research universities are working on the most critical issues of the day in life sciences, AI, robotics, transportation, and energy. Breakout companies are making headlines and garnering major investments. And the diversity of talent across the state is contributing to a rich capacity for community-based innovation. In short, Pennsylvania has much of what it takes to be a winner on a national economic map characterized by a short list of “superstars” and a longer one of “left behind” places. And yet, for all that, Pennsylvania has not been able to convert its assets into abundant, high-quality economic growth or broad-based employment across an array of high-tech, high-pay advanced industries. Given that, Pennsyl
vania needs to unlock its innovation potential, which will require catalytic steps on the part of state government. Join Brookings Institution’s senior fellow Mark Muro and senior research assistant Robert Maxim in a discussion of what’s holding back Pennsylvania and state-level policy recommendations with an eye toward helping the new governor energize the state’s innovation sector. Moderator is JES VP Ben Speggen.
Germany’s industrial heartland Ruhr has been experiencing structural change for more than 60 years. The decline of the former old heavy industries of coal and steel needed new answers, new strategies and new projects. During the 1990s a unique workshop for the future of old industrial regions was performed with more than 100 single projects and 17 cities: the International Building Exhibition Emscher Park. These creative 10 years became a quality-fundament of the development until today. In 2010 the Region was nominated as European Capital of Culture Ruhr with the programmatic title: Change by Culture & Culture by Change. The public highlight of this year was the unique coffee table with 2 million people on Germanys Autobahn A 40. Michael Schwarze-Rodrian joined the last three decades of structural change as a landscape planner and a moderator of several inter-municipal cooperations in the Ruhr Region. Since 2012 he served as the EU Representative of the Region and promoted Green Infrastructures and integrated solutions for a sustainable region. He will describe the background of the unique coffee table and the ongoing context of structural change.
The speakers published an article in 2017 concerning the two cities, their development and trajectory. They will be returning to the Jefferson to update their analyses of the two cities since that time. Lublin has faced many changes since 2017, the effects from Brexit to changing political regimes and being the closest major Polish city to the Ukraine, taking in many thousands of refugees. Erie has changed as well, having seen major developments in its downtown and surrounding areas, from the new Erie Insurance building and many other new construction projects downtown. All through this both cities have had their challenges in demographics and the still threatening Corona Virus. What strategies are these two sister cities pursuing, if any? Join us for a look at these exciting and international perspectives.
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