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Photo credit: Wally Gobetz/Flickr

Increasingly, entrepreneurs and other professionals are gravitating toward small and mid-sized cities, and the quality of life they provide. As smaller cities look to harness their futures — and superstar hubs including San Francisco and New York become increasingly saturated — cities including Denver, Austin, Portland, and Salt Lake City are attracting new waves of economic growth and vibrancy. Often overlooked, these cities and many of the mayors leading them have the opportunity to propel economic progress. Over the past decade, Jersey City has emerged as one such hub.

In the early 2010s, Jersey City’s population grew by 4.8 percent…


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Over the past decade Jersey City has morphed, undergoing a transformation into an emerging hub for tech and economic growth. The city rebounded from an economic decline, expanding into creative, tech, and business fields. Mayor Fulop, elected in 2013, has helped lead that charge by leveraging Jersey City’s assets to improve quality of place, and make the city’s growing tech sector a key priority. During his tenure, the city has encouraged business and tech growth while working to preserve its identity as a scalable, affordable hub with a community feel. Today, Jersey City’s waterfront Exchange Place is known as “Wall…


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Photo Credit: Flickr Contributor huckstero

Despite global leaders like New York and San Francisco, the future of tech startup enterprise and capital in the United States is uncertain. Today, the capital is moving overseas, and with it, so goes industry: In mid-1990s, the United States represented 95 percent of the world’s venture capital activity — a number that has fallen to just over half. And much of the current growth is in cities across China, India, Europe, and the United Kingdom. .

Recently the NYU SPS Schack Institute of Real Estate Urban Lab and the Center for American Entrepreneurship released a study on venture capital…


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Image Credit: Flickr Contributor UFCW International Union

Though traditional developers and policymakers have long viewed inequality as a byproduct of economic development, the tide is now changing. While today’s local governments are placing inclusion at the top of their agendas, private anchor institutions are also focused on community engagement in the form of new public parks, highway underpasses, and affordable housing initiatives. As a follow-up to our September 2017 paper, “The Case for Inclusive Prosperity,” the NYUSPS Urban Lab at the Schack Institute of Real Estate identified some of the latest, and most prominent, examples of an inclusive prosperity strategy. Full paper available here.

Require Affordable Housing

When it comes…


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Image credit: Flickr Contributor Lori Greig

While today’s cities attract rising shares of innovation, they are surprisingly slow to adopt new technology. As universities and startups pioneer the latest in technological research, the design and function of many cities remain mired in the 20th century. This is especially the case when it comes to infrastructure, land use, civic engagement, and environmental practices — each of which is essential to growth and prosperity in urban areas.

Recently, Urban Lab Director Steven Pedigo moderated a talk at Google that brainstormed solutions to these digital divides. The conversation convened experts from an array of fields, including real estate, technology…


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Image credit: Flickr Contributor Incase

Tourism has left an indelible mark on the global economy. Today, the tourism industry represents nearly 10 percent of the world’s GDP ($7 trillion) and 11 percent of jobs nationwide. This trend is likely to continue as travel becomes increasingly popular and accessible around the globe. Even in the midst of a fraught political landscape, tourism encourages the steady exchange of goods and ideas — a key element of economic growth. At the same time, the tourism industry has given rise to a number of troubling externalities such as gentrification and a lack of affordability in cities.

In the past…


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Image credit: Flickr Contributor Maciek Lulko

The bidding war for Amazon’s second North American headquarters has been shrouded in commotion and controversy. Since announcing their RFP in September 2017, Amazon has come under fire by many academics and policymakers, who argue that the company’s willingness to accept major giveaways will divert much-needed funds for schools, housing, transportation, and other public goods. In particular, economists have expressed concern over the bidding process, which pits cities against one another in a likely effort to drive up the price of incentives.

In the wake of Amazon’s initial announcement, cities like San Antonio and Little Rock, Arkansas rescinded their bids…


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Image Credit: Flickr Contributor Michael Righi

When it comes to developing a city brand, it’s tempting to look to other areas for examples. But, according to Laura Sellors, a partner at the international branding firm Entro, the secret to place branding lies in highlighting a city’s unique characteristics — not mimicking a tried-and-true formula.

On June 6, Sellors will share further insights on place branding at City Nation Place Americas, a two-day conference co-hosted by the NYUSPS Urban Lab at the Schack Institute of Real Estate. We caught up with her ahead of the conference to learn more about her communications and design philosophy.

What role…


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Image credit: Flickr Contributor Mauro Medina Susarrey

In 2013, Mexico witnessed the collapse of three of its largest housing developers. Five years later, the nation has seen a boom in investment and multifamily construction. As Mexico’s real estate industry continues to expand, a growing share of young residents and families have begun locate in secondary cities like Queretaro, Guadalajara, or Monterrey, a mountainous urban community in the northeast.

With its lush landscape, commercial industries, and large share of international corporations, Monterrey has cultivated a unique brand as a center for both sustainability and development. To learn more about the city’s real estate sector, we caught up with…


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Image credit: Flickr Contributor Bill VanderMolen

In the wake of deindustrialization, Detroit saw its population, wages, and share of local businesses decline. At the same time, the city’s crime and poverty rates began to skyrocket, prompting travel warnings from foreign governments and a loss of tourism revenue. Today, the city is on the mend, thanks to large-scale investments from key players like Dan Gilbert, the founder of Quicken Loans and Bedrock.

As residents and corporations return to the area, Gilbert’s team has positioned Detroit as a both a knowledge and manufacturing hub (or, as Gilbert calls it, an “intersection of muscles and brains”). To understand more…

NYUSPS UrbanLab

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