Cleveland State University

Economic Development

Research Topics


Manufacturing Pennsylvania's Future: Regional strategies that build from competitive strengths and address competitive challenges, one of nine co-authors (Harrisburg: Team PA Foundation, January 2004).

In the fall of 2003, the Pennsylvania Industrial Resource Centers (IRCs) and the TEAM PA Foundation commissioned Deloitte to conduct a study of the current dynamics and possiblefutures of the Pennsylvania manufacturing economy. The goals of the study were four fold:
1) Document the past and present importance of manufacturing to the Pennsylvania economy
2) Analyze the forces that will shape the possible futures of manufacturing in Pennsylvania
3) Assess the economic impact and return on investment of the Industrial Resources Centers
4) Identify actions to help achieve a dynamic and prosperous future for manufacturing in Pennsylvania and, in turn, a prosperous future for Pennsylvania through investments in manufacturing

Hill, Edward W. and Billie K. Geyer, Business Climate, Business Taxes, and Economic Development, Taxing Issues, October 2002, Cleveland, OH: Federation for Community Planning. (This is a reprint of Chapter 4 of Ohio's Competitive Advantage: Manufacturing Productivity (Cleveland: Levin College of Urban Affairs, Cleveland State University, 2001).

An overview of the State of Ohio's business tax structure is relevant to the current statewide policy discussions about tax policy and school funding because one of the outcomes of the state's current economic development programs is to counteract parts of the business tax code, specifically the Tangible Personal Property Tax, that put the state at a cost disadvantage compared with neighboring states. This tax in particular, and business taxation in general, needs to be reconsidered within the context of the state's overall system of public finance. In this chapter, particular attention is paid to the role that business taxation plays in state and local government finance and the horizontal equity-or fairness-of the state's business tax system.
The overall level of business taxation is not at issue in Ohio-the state is near the average of its immediate neighbor and competitor states on this measure of competitiveness. The problem is with the structure of taxation, the way it penalizes Ohio's demonstrated competitive advantage, and (most seriously of all) the way it provides disincentives for investing in both productivity-enhancing capital and new ventures-which are at the foundation of income growth in the state. A competitive analysis of Ohio's business taxes released in the fall of 1997 determined that "Ohio's average tax burden on all businesses is the fifth lowest among these 11 [competitor] states…. Ohio's business share of total tax collections is smaller than six of these 10 neighboring and competing states…. It is important to remember that these gross tax burden measures mask significant variations in the level of taxation imposed on businesses within specific industries."

Burgess, Patricia, Ruth Durack, and Edward W. Hill, Re-imaging the rust belt: Can Cleveland sustain the renaissance? In Sam Bass Warner and Lawrence J. Vale (Eds.) Imaging the city (New Brunswick, NJ: CUPR Press, 2001): 95-117.

A team of Clevelanders - historian Patricia Burgess, urban designer Ruth Durack, and economist Edward Hill - continues the evaluation of the fused politics of image-making and land-use planning. In the 1970s, Cleveland, like the Bronx, suffered a national reputation as a dying city. Re-imaging the whole city was the new goal, and rebuilding its downtown was the heart of the undertaking. Downtown renewal, however, called into play a different set of actors than the efforts to revive a residential district. Like the Bronx, however, the nature of the planning process itself exerted a powerful force upon both the image sought and the building that followed.

Hill, Edward W. and John F. Brennan, A methodology for identifying the drivers of industrial clusters: The foundation of regional competitive advantage, Economic Development Quarterly 14(1) (February 2000): 65-96. * In 2005 and 2006 ranked fourth in EDQ's citation list.

This article represents a theoretically based method for identifying the clusters of industries in which a region has a competitive advantage. The method combines cluster analysis with discriminant analysis, using variables derived from economic base theory and measures of productivity, to identify the industries in which a region has its greatest competitive advantage. These industries are called driver industries because they drive the region's economy. The driver industries are linked to supplier and customer industries with information from a region-specific input-output model to form industry clusters. After introductory comments about cluster-based approaches to understanding regional economies, the authors present an overview of their method and the variables used. They then apply this method to the Cleveland-Akron Consolidated Metropolitan Statistical Area.

Brennan, John F. and Edward W. Hill, Measuring metropolitan manufacturing competitiveness, Economic Development Commentary (Summer 1999) 23(2): 33-38. **

The authors developed a ranking of the manufacturing competitiveness of all metropolitan areas in the U.S. The index results provide three lessons: 1) manufacturing competitiveness goes far beyond production and production plans, 2) all five disciplines of production are critical to regional economic performance and 3) high quality sub-national economic data is one of the hidden competitive advantages of the U.S. economy.

Hill, Edward W., The Cleveland economy: A case study of economic restructuring. In W. Dennis Keating, Norman Krumholz and David Perry (eds.) Cleveland: A metropolitan reader (Kent, OH: Kent State University Press, 1995): 53-86. Parts of this chapter have been subsequently reprinted as: A city built on work, Cleveland Plain Dealer, October 7, 1997 and Bingham et al., Beyond edge cities (NY: Garland Publishing, 1997) pp.56-61.

In 1978 everything seemed to come apart in Cleveland: politically, the mayor survived a voter recall by 236 votes; fiscally, Cleveland was the first city to suffer a bond default since the Great Depression; and ecologically, Lake Erie was declared dead. Coterminous with these disasters, the economy of Greater Cleveland experienced an irreparable secular erosion of its durable goods base, starting in the third quarter of 1979 and continuing until the first quarter of 1983, signaling the end of the old economic order. This essay discusses Cleveland's shift from the old to a new order economy. A brief description of the emergence of the industrial old order economy is followed by an analysis of the new economic structure. This analysis suggests that the new economic structure involves more than the numbers of jobs lost or changed. It is also evident in changes in the incidence of poverty, the relative costs of housing, and the occupational characteristics of the residential labor force.

* article is peer reviewed
** article is reviewed by editorial board
*** article is invited

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