Jane Jacobs: The Champion of Little Plans
Nate Storring, for The American Interest:
Too many people, places, and sectors have been left out.
At the very moment that popular culture has begun to fetishize entrepreneurship, America is at a 30-year low in new business starts. As recently as 2015 nearly two-thirds of U.S. metro areas lost more firms than they created. Meanwhile, the majority of economic development agencies are stuck in the same old paradigm Jacobs describes (best exemplified by the obscene contest for Amazon’s HQ2) in which cities compete to lure mature corporations to relocate with tax incentives. This paradigm continues despite its proven ineffectiveness and its bloated price tag: more than $65 billion in public funds from 2000 to 2015.