No. 75 FEBRUARY 2013
AMERICA'S GROWTH CORRIDORS:
The Key to National Revival
The Real Winners Of The Global Economy: The Material Boys, Joel Kotkin, Forbes.com's "New Geographer",
America's Red State Growth Corridors, Joel Kotkin,
The Wall Street Journal, 2-26-13
IN THE NEWS
Conservatives are winning … in the states, Rare, Jeb Bush, 4-29-13
GOP On Roll With Red State Growth, Boston Herald, 3-28-13
Did I Abandon My Creative Class Theory?, The Daily Beast, 3-21-13
Why Voters Trust the GOP with Their Tax Dollars..., The Fiscal Times, 3-20-13
Ideas Trump Resources When it Comes to City Growth, The Atlantic "Cities", 3-13-13
Idaho is part of a U.S. "growth corridor", Idaho Business Review, 3-13-13
The Axis of Ennui, David Brooks, The New York Times, 3-12-13
Californians Want Oil's Tax Revenue Without the Oil, Bloomberg, 3-10-13
As State's Allure Fades, Other Regions Flourish, The Sacramento Bee, 3-9-13
In Houston, Energy's Haves and Have-Nots, The Wall Street Journal, 3-4-13
Linked on National Center for Policy Analysis, 3-4-13
Linked on Bradley Foundation site, 3-1-13
Oklahoma is part of country defying national growth trends, The Oklahoman, Editorial, 3-3-13
Is Ohio's job growth real or a mirage?, Ohio Watchdog.org, 3-1-13
An example for Alberta in shifting U.S. growth patterns, Calgary Herald, 2-28-13
America's New 'Ruhrgebiet', Canada Free Press, 2-28-13
Why Sarah Palin? Why Ted Cruz?: 'Nationalists' and 'Federalists', The Hill, 2-27-13
America's economic star: Houston, Culture Map Houston, 2-27-13
Red state victory: Energy-rich, pro-business states key to recovery, Washington Examiner, 2-27-13
Red States Leap Ahead, Walter Russell Mead's "The American Interest", 2-27-13
Sure, the economy is creating jobs; guess where?, HotAir.com, 2-26-13
Red States Lead Way on Growth, Newsmax.com, 2-26-13
States That Grow, Newsmax.com, 2-26-13
Houston dominates America's growth corridors, The Houston Chronicle's "Opportunity Urbanist", 2-26-13
Idaho among regions to lead nation's growth over next 40 years, says think tank, The Idaho Statesman's "Idaho
America's red-state growth corridors, HotAir.com, 2-26-13
Obama's chicken little presidency, Washington Examiner's "Morning Examiner", 2-26-13
Linked on Reddit, 2-26-13
Linked on Instapundit, 2-26-13
Linked on RealClearPolicy.com, 2-26-13
Featured on NewGeography.com, 2-26-13
FBN's "Stossel Show with John Stossel," 2-28-13
SDPR's "Dakota Midday Show with Karl Gehrke," 3-1-13
KNRS 570 AM's "The Rod Arquette Show," 3-1-13
Bloomberg Radio's "The Hays Advantage," 2-26-13
|Table of Contents:
|About the Author
|PART 1: Where the Growth Is
|PART 2: Why the Growth is Where the Growth Is
|PART 3: How the Growth is Happening
|PART 4: Americas Future and the Growth Corridors
Much of the discussion about American economic recovery and growth in 2012 focused on the usual suspects: regions
on the Pacific and Atlantic coasts and on the shores of the Great Lakes. But the best recent economic record, as well
as the best prospects for future prosperity, are to be found elsewhere in the United States.
We have identified four regions of the country that we call "growth corridors." What they lack in media attention they
make up for in past performance and likely future success. Over the past decade-and, in some cases, far longer-these
regions have created more jobs and gained more population than their counterparts along the ocean coasts or along
the Great Lakes.
The four growth corridors are:
1. The Great Plains region, made up of Montana, Wyoming, Colorado, New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas,
Nebraska, and the Dakotas
2. The "Third Coast" stretch of counties whose shores abut the Gulf of Mexico and which range through Texas,
Louisiana, Mississippi, and Florida
3. The "Intermountain West," consisting of counties in the north of New Mexico and Arizona, parts of eastern
California and western regions of Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado, as well as the non-coastal eastern regions
of Oregon and Washington and all of Idaho, Utah, and Nevada
4. The "Southeast Manufacturing Belt" of counties in eastern Arkansas, all of Tennessee, and large swaths of
Kentucky, the Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and southwestern Virginia
These regions have different histories and different trajectories into the future, but they share certain key drivers of
economic growth: lower costs (particularly for housing); better business climates; and population growth. Some have
benefited from the strong global market for commodities, particularly food, natural gas, and oil. Others are expanding
because of a resurgence in manufacturing in the United States.
In this report, we describe the growth corridors in some detail and explore what their success means for the country as a
whole. Part 1 describes what the corridors are, in terms of geography, population, and history. Part 2 explains why they
are succeeding while America's traditional economic powerhouses are growing at relatively anemic rates. Part 3 explains
how the growth corridors are advancing, noting the key industries in each. Part 4 considers the contrast between the
growth corridors and the rest of the nation and explains why the growth-corridor mix of culture and policies is crucial
to the future success of the United States.
To be sure, New York, Los Angeles, the San Francisco Bay Area, and Chicago will remain the country's leading metropolitan
agglomerations for the foreseeable future. But an important urban story of the coming decades will be the emergence
of interior metropolitan areas such as Houston, Dallas–Fort Worth, Tampa, Oklahoma City, and Omaha. On a smaller
scale, fast-growing Lafayette (Louisiana), Baton Rouge, Midland (Texas), Sioux Falls (South Dakota), Fargo, and a host of
other smaller cities will continue to expand. We may also witness the resurgence of New Orleans as a leading cultural
and business center for the south and the Gulf Coast.
This ascendancy of the growth corridors follows one of the great principles of American history. The "most important
effect of the frontier," as Frederick Jackson Turner noted, was how it promoted democracy by spreading opportunity.
The expanding frontier-then rural, now metropolitan-reinforces the fundamental individualism at the core of
Equally important, the corridors reveal the most immediate way to propel a broad growth trajectory for the entire United
States. By restoring a strong growth path, as well as the optimism that accompanies it, the corridors could help bring
about a resurgence whose benefits will extend far beyond their boundaries to touch the entire nation.
About the Author
Joel Kotkin is a Manhattan Institute adjunct fellow and City Journal contributing editor. He currently writes the weekly
"New Geographer" column for Forbes.com. He is also a distinguished presidential fellow in urban futures at Chapman
University in Orange, California, a senior visiting fellow at the Civil Service College in Singapore, and a fellow at the
National Chamber Foundation. He also serves as executive editor of the website www.newgeography.com. Kotkin's
books include The Next Hundred Million: America in 2050 (The Penguin Press) and The City: A Global History (Random
House/Modern Library). In 2010 he won the Gene Burd Award for best urban reporting. He is currently serving as a
guest lecturer at Singapore's Civil Service College. Kotkin attended the University of California, Berkeley. A native New
Yorker, he has lived in California since 1971.
The author gratefully acknowledges the assistance of Mark Schill of the Praxis Strategy Group and of researchers
Andy Sywak and Gary Girod.
PART 1: Where the Growth Is
Future American economic growth will not be centered in the denser
regions of the East and West Coasts of the United States that are often
lionized in the national press. Instead, growth in the near future (and
likely beyond) will be found in four broad regions that are already
doing well, despite a devastating recession and weak recovery. Even as
many Americans lower their expectations of future prosperity for
themselves and their children, these regions look forward to robust
expansion in the years ahead.
We have defined these regions as the nation's "growth corridors:" (1)
the Great Plains region, comprising Montana, Wyoming, Colorado,
New Mexico, Texas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Nebraska, and the Dakotas;
(2) the "Third Coast" stretch of counties whose shores abut the Gulf
of Mexico and which range through Texas, Louisiana, Mississippi,
and Florida; (3) the "Intermountain West," comprising counties in
the north of New Mexico and Arizona, parts of eastern California
and western regions of Montana, Wyoming, and Colorado, as well
as the non-coastal eastern regions of Oregon and Washington and
all of Idaho, Utah, and Nevada; and (4) the "Southeast Manufacturing Belt," comprising counties in eastern Arkansas,
all of Tennessee, and large swaths of Kentucky, the
Carolinas, Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and southwestern Virginia.
As reflected in the figure above, the growth-corridor
story is not entirely a tale of differences among states
or the traditionally recognized regions of the country.
All four growth corridors possess certain characteristics (for example, all are friendly to business and have
the political will to exploit their natural resources).
But they have distinct histories and are now on different trajectories of growth. Overall, the corridors
account for 45 percent of the nation's land mass
30 percent of its population.
Their bright prospects
reflect economic and geographic logic working itself
out at the regional, state, and local levels.
Our analysis explores these realities. It finds that over
the past decade-and, in some cases, far longer-the
growth corridors have created more jobs and gained
more population than their counterparts along the
Atlantic and Pacific coasts and the Great Lakes
(the only exception to this pattern is Washington,
D.C., whose economic expansion is due to political
developments, not economic fundamentals). The
growth corridors have also, for the most part, seen
higher growth in wages and GDP. On measures of
job and wealth creation, these four areas have generally outperformed the West and East Coasts and the
Since the financial meltdown of 2009, the majority of
counties that have recovered all jobs that were lost in the
recession have been in one of the four growth corridors.
Some critics have claimed that much of this growth
has been driven by low wages. For example, columnist
Harold Meyerson holds that these regions are partaking of a global "race to the bottom" in wages. He
believes that foreign firms come to "slum" America,
where Europeans, in particular, now go "to get the
job done cheap."
With 30 million people, covering roughly 20 percent of the country, the Great Plains region represents both the largest and the least populated of the
growth corridors. This is the region that might have been least expected to do well. After its half-century of slow—even negative—population growth,
many in the mainstream media had all but written off the region.
As recently as 2006, The New York Times described the region as "not far from forsaken." New Jersey academics Deborah E. Popper and Frank
J. Popper even proposed that Washington turn the entire region into "the ultimate national park," returning the land and its communities to a "buffalo
commons." The Poppers predicted that the region would "become almost totally depopulated."
Yet over the past decade, the Plains region has been transformed from "forsaken" into a region of opportunity. Five of the six best cities for "starting
over in 2012," according to TheStreet.com, were located in the Dakotas, Iowa, and Nebraska. Remarkably, the vast majority of migrants coming to the
region, according to demographer Ali Modarres, are not returning boomers but young people in their twenties to mid-forties, the key family-raising years.
With the influx of a younger, better-educated, and more diverse population, the Plains region will also change: it will be more urban, ethnically
diverse, and sophisticated than ever before; and it will be poised to become a major long-term contributor to the nation's economic future.
The Third Coast region surrounds the Gulf of Mexico from Brownsville, Texas, to Tampa, Florida, and is home to 16 million people. It is one of the most
rapidly growing regions in the country. Not only has population growth been far greater than the national average; job growth has been greater, too.
One critical growth industry for the future of the Gulf Coast lies in medical services. In Houston, for example, the massive Texas Medical Center is
now the largest concentration of medical facilities in the world. This is a major reason that Houston now ranks as the country's 12th-largest business
district in terms of square feet, ahead of downtown Los Angeles, with plans to expand so that it will rival Philadelphia's (the seventh-largest) in size by
Houston, the clear center of the Third Coast economy, has emerged as one of the country's megacities. Over the past decade, Houston has had
one of the largest increases in employment of any major metropolitan area—up 15 percent between 2000 and 2011.
Meanwhile, New Orleans' demographic revival reflects not only the return of evacuees from Katrina but also the movement of younger, educated
people into the area. There has been a steady growth of industries, including energy, and also in such fields as digital effects, entertainment, and
software. Inc. Magazine described New Orleans as the "coolest start-up city in America." Though New Orleans was long plagued with one of the worst
business climates in the nation, Marketwatch now places it in the top third.
With the region's traditional education gap continuing to narrow and other economic engines humming, the Third Coast appears likely to continue
to grow rapidly. In the process, it will challenge the long-time supremacy of the Atlantic and Pacific economies and open a new era anchored along the
somewhat less scenic, but increasingly economically vital, shores of the Mexican Gulf.
Perhaps none of our corridors has better prospects than the Intermountain West region. It has the advantages of a well-educated and growing
population, as well as enormous natural resources. A vast region covering 655,000 square miles between the Rocky Mountain foothills and the Sierra
and Cascade mountain ranges, it is home to 12.8 million people.
Over the past ten years, the Intermountain West has had the highest growth in jobs of any area—some 14.7 percent, more than three times the
national average. At the same time, the region's population grew 20 percent, the highest of any corridor, and almost three times as quickly as the rest of
the country. It has consistently showed the greatest growth of any region in terms of high-tech jobs.
Given the area's natural attractiveness and a continued good business climate, the Intermountain West should enjoy strong growth over the coming
In contrast to the other corridors, some states that constitute the Southeast Manufacturing Belt region—Alabama, Mississippi, Georgia, Tennessee,
Kentucky and the Carolinas—have recovered slowly since the Great Recession. Yet we believe in the continued emergence of this region, largely
because of the continuing shift of population to this region, which is home to some 40 million people and extends over 222,000 square miles.
The key to the Southeast Manufacturing Belt region's future lies in its ability to bring skilled labor and investment into the area, particularly for higher
value-added industries. "Southerners don't have any rich relatives. God was a Northerner," the head of the pro-development Southern Regional Council
told the journalist Joel Garreau three decades ago. "Without a heritage of anything except denial, Southerners, given a chance to improve their standard
of living, are doing so."
This effort once focused on U.S.-based low-tech firms, but increasingly the region targets are higher-wage industries. As measured by "location
quotient"—the concentration of a particular sector in a state—Alabama, Mississippi, the Carolinas, and Tennessee rank within the top 15 of states most
reliant upon manufacturing for the health of their economies.
This emphasis on manufacturing could help spark future growth. European, Japanese, and Korean firms appear likely to continue shifting
operations into the Southeast. All these countries suffer from the effect of aging populations (a looming shortage of working-age people), and the
economies of Europe and Japan will remain weak for the foreseeable future. China, once the obvious destination for manufacturers, is plagued by
political problems, rising costs, and an unreliable legal system. This leaves the Southeast Manufacturing Belt a likely recipient of new, large-scale
industrial global investment.
- Timothy Egan, "As Others Abandon Plains, the Indian and Bison Come Back," The New York Times, May 27, 2001; and Richard Rubin, "Not Far from Forsaken," The New York Times, April 9, 2006.
- Deborah Epstein Popper and Frank J. Popper, "The Great Plains: From Dust to Dust," Planning Magazine, December 1987.
- Jerold Leslie, "6 Best Cities for Starting Over in 2012," TheStreet.com, December 19, 2011.
- Robert W. Gilmer, Robert F. Hodgin, and Mary Schiflett, "Economic Impact of the Texas Medical Center on Southeast Texas," Houston Business, October 2001;
and "Texas Medical Center: Collaboration Beyond Boundaries," 2011.
- Douglas McCollam, "The Big Easy’s Business Leap Forward," The Wall Street Journal, March 17, 2012; and Russ Britt, "New Orleans Business: Most Improved in
2011," The Wall Street Journal, December 13, 2011.
- U.S. Census estimated 2010
- Joel Garreau, Nine Nations of North America (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1981), p. 143.
- Jeff Bennett, "Europe Car Makers Confront Gloom," The Wall Street Journal, September 28, 2012; Jack Ewing, "European Automakers Face a Stunted Future," The New York Times, September 28, 2012; and
Christopher Rauwald and Gilles Castonguay, "Fiat Will Shrink Spending in Europe," The Wall Street Journal, June 16, 2012.
An analysis of wage rates belies this claim. For the
most part, the corridors have enjoyed considerably
higher income and higher overall state product
growth than the rest of the country in the past decade. In fact, of areas now experiencing strong GDP
growth, the vast majority lie within the corridors.
Income growth has also been stronger in these regions
than the national average.
PART 2: Why the Growth Is Where It Is
Perhaps the biggest advantage that the corridors
have today is their business climate. Often historically poor, many of these areas have stayed
hungry: they continue to seek out ways to expand
incomes and opportunities for their residents. In
many ways, they resemble the hungry barbarians
who, as the great fourteenth-century Arab historian
Ibn Khaldun noted, usurp the more established regimes that develop in the comfort of luxurious cities.
Over time, these regimes suffer "the chronic diseases
of senility"-lack of ambition, vigor, discipline, and
willingness to sacrifice for the next generation-that
the poorer peoples often avoid.
This contrast can be seen in comparisons of growthcorridor government policies with those of other
regions, on such matters as housing and the development of manufacturing and natural resources.
California, for example, is a vast state with enormous
fossil-fuel resources but chooses, in the name of
environmental protection, to govern itself as if land
and energy supplies were severely constrained.
result, North Dakota recently passed California as the
nation's third-largest energy producer, a development
that would have been inconceivable a decade ago.
Attitudes toward growth in the United States range
from suspicion and constraint to an enthusiastic
willingness to expand. The contrast between the two
approaches is the starkest difference between the eagerto-grow corridors and the rest of the nation. A review
of state business climates by Chief Executive magazine
shows that 11 of the top 15 states ranked for the best
business climate were located in the corridors. The list
was led by Texas, which straddles the Great Plains and
the Third Coast growth corridors, and also included
two Third Coast states, Florida and Louisiana, as well
as southeastern states North Carolina, Tennessee,
South Carolina, and Georgia, plus Utah and Colorado
from the Intermountain West and North Dakota in
the Great Plains. In contrast, California, New York,
Illinois, and Massachusetts sat at the bottom.
Similar patterns occur in surveys of state tax burdens, where Wyoming topped the list as the least
burdensome state, followed by South Dakota, while
California, New York, and New Jersey occupied the
bottom three places.
Overall rankings from the
National Federation of Independent Business found
13 of the 15 top-ranked states in the corridors, led
by Utah and South Dakota. New York, Illinois, and
California did poorly.
Current trends suggest that no relief is in sight for
these high-tax states. On the contrary, they are moving toward increasing their tax burdens. Over the
past year, New York, California, and Illinois have
instigated higher tax rates. According to a recent
analysis, three jurisdictions-California, New York
City, and Hawaii-will have top marginal effective
income-tax rates of over 50 percent in 2013, assuming the expiration of the Bush tax cuts at the federal
Even as this trend rolls forward on the East
and West Coasts, most of the corridor states' rates
have been heading lower.
Different views of growth stem largely from different
attitudes toward wealth creation and employment.
In states such as New York and California, everincreasing taxes place a disincentive on entrepreneurs
and upwardly mobile professionals. In both states,
the consequence has been out-of-state migration by
middle-income people and by businesses-often to
the lower-tax, more business-friendly environments
of the corridors.
A business climate also affects investment patterns. A
great deal of recent foreign and domestic investment,
in petrochemicals, automobiles, steel, and transportation sectors, has gravitated to the southeastern U.S.
states and Texas-places with above-average business
climates. For example, the states of the old Confederacy, which comprise counties in three of the four
corridors, boast all top five business climates and ten
of the top 12 for locating new plants, according to a
recent study by Site Selection magazine.
The Resurgence of the "Real" Economy
It has been established for some time that in a postindustrial economy, dependence on raw materials is
increasingly irrelevant-and even detrimental-to
future growth. The New York Times columnist Thomas Friedman writes of the "curse" of raw-material
wealth and warns about the dangers of using rawmaterial development to spur growth. Others, such
as the hyperbolic analyst and author James Howard
Kunstler, predict a terrible "final blow-off of late oilbased industrialism" that will prove lethal to living
standards in the United States as a whole and to its
sprawling Sunbelt regions in particular.
In reality, much of the world's sustained economic
growth since 2000 has occurred not in financial or
information capitals but in regions that produce
basic commodities such as energy and food. In the
developed world, the consistently best-performing
countries since 2008 have been resource-rich ones
such as Norway, Australia, and Canada. Much of
Brazil's recent rise has been driven by the growth of
manufactured and food exports, as well as its recent
achievement of energy self-sufficiency.
This economic pattern is a factor in the success of the
growth corridors. Over the past decade, the domestic resource economy has enjoyed unexpected growth,
which has helped insulate three of the corridor regions-the Great Plains, the Intermountain West, and
the Third Coast-from the worst ravages of the Great
Recession. Their expansion has been led, particularly
in the Great Plains, by a boom in agriculture exports:
in 2011, the U.S. exported a record $135 billion, with
a net favorable balance of $47 billion, the highest in
nominal dollars since the 1980s.
What accounts for this boom? One driver is growing
markets in the developing world-notably, China,
which consumes almost 60 percent of the world's
soybean exports and 40 percent of its cotton. The
Great Plains corridor, in particular, produces both
these crops in abundance, which is one reason for
its increased share of U.S. exports.
The importance of agricultural resources and energy are
well recognized by investors. The International Food
Policy Research Institute reports that foreign investors
sought or secured 37-49 million acres of farmland in the
developing world between 2006 and mid-2009. Investors, including hedge funds and overseas companies, are
also investing heavily in U.S. cropland.
Progress on Education
Despite recent gains, arguably the greatest challenge
facing the corridors lies in education. Most corridor cities lag behind the national average in levels of
education. In some, there remains a lack of first-class
educational institutions. According to U.S. News and
World Report, only 18 of the top 100 universities are
in the corridors.
This educational shortfall is most evident in the
Southeast and Third Coast corridors. The Southeast's
overall low level of educational attainment has long
constituted the region's primary economic disadvantage. Every state in the Southeast falls below the
national average of the percentage of residents aged
25 and older with a bachelor's degree. Mississippi
has the third-lowest rate in the nation, with less than
20 percent of residents holding a B.A.
is the only state in the Southeast that exceeds the
national average of 18-24-year-olds enrolled in college.
Over 15 percent of adults in Alabama, South
Carolina, Mississippi, and Georgia lack basic literacy
skills-again, all figures that are well below national
Similarly, all the Third Coast's major metropolitan
areas remain below the national average in terms of
people who have bachelor's degrees, with the exception of Houston and Tallahassee, Florida's capital.
This shortcoming is widely recognized in the region:
there have been several strong reform efforts in the
states hugging the Gulf of Mexico-notably, in the
long-plagued New Orleans schools.
migration trends in New Orleans offer hopeful signs:
according to a recent analysis of educated migrants
by demographer Wendell Cox, New Orleans had the
largest increase in educated population of any U.S.
metropolitan area between 2007 and 2009, increasing far more than any of the traditional East or West
Coast "brain magnets."
Knowing that their lagging education rates must be
addressed, leadership in both major parties in the
southern corridors has focused heavily on economically meaningful improvements to education. For
instance, the Clemson University International Automotive Research Center in South Carolina is one
of the only schools in the nation to offer a Ph.D. in
In order to lure a major
auto manufacturer to northeastern Mississippi, a
consortium of area leaders launched a comprehensive effort through area community colleges to retrain
laid-off furniture-industry workers in classes such as
robotics used in auto assembly.
This type of workforce investment helped land a coveted investment
from Toyota. In 2011, the company opened up a
new facility in Blue Springs, Mississippi, devoted to
manufacturing Corollas; it will soon start making
the hybrid Prius as well. To an area ravaged by the
contraction of the local furniture-assembly sector, this
plant added 1,300 jobs at range of wages between
$15-$28 an hour.
The Southeast's education levels are increasing more
rapidly than those of traditional brain magnets (as
are the education levels of the other three corridors).
Raleigh, Charlotte, and Nashville experienced exceptionally high-percentage growth in their numbers of
residents with bachelor's degrees, well above the national average. In gross numbers, Atlanta added more
than 300,000 residents with bachelor's degrees over
the past decade, more than Philadelphia and Miami
and almost 70,000 more than Boston.
The Third Coast has had strong increases in the number of people with bachelor's degrees. Critically, some
of the largest increases in college-educated persons
have occurred in areas such as south Texas (Brownsville, Corpus Christi), which have long struggled with
low education levels. Houston, Dallas, Baton Rouge,
and Tampa have seen stronger rates of growth in the
numbers of educated people moving into their areas,
more so than such cities as New York, Los Angeles,
Chicago, and San Francisco.
In sharp contrast to the Third Coast, the Intermountain West and the Great Plains already benefit from
above-average education levels. Most major cities in
the Intermountain region-Provo, Salt Lake City,
Denver, Spokane, and Boise-boast above-average
percentages of adults with bachelor's degrees or
higher. In Denver, the percentage of people with
graduate or professional degrees, about 13 percent,
is some 30 percent above the national average.
20 percent of Salt Lake City's metropolitan-area
adults have a bachelor's degree, compared with 18
More important, the Intermountain West is increasing its educated workforces far faster than the rest of
country, including such traditional magnets as the Northeast and California. This is particularly true of
the region's top two cities, Denver and Salt Lake City.
The Great Plains region, particularly in its northern
sections, has an enormous, if underappreciated, edge
in terms of educated people. Many of the states with
the highest proportions of college-educated people
in the age cohorts of 25-44 are located in the Great
Plains, led by North Dakota and spreading south to
Kansas, all of which greatly exceed the national average. Only Oklahoma, New Mexico, and Texas lag.
These are the kinds of educated workers who traditionally migrated to the coasts. But in the past decade, the
percentage of growth of bachelor's degrees in the Great
Plains metropolitan areas was among the highest in the
nation and far more robust than that in the traditional
bastions of educated people such as Washington, New
York, Boston, and San Francisco. This is true not only
of larger metropolitan regions, such as Dallas-Fort
Worth and Oklahoma City, but of smaller cities such
as Sioux Falls, whose population of college-educated
people grew 60 percent over the last decade.
Improving economic prospects have had a profound
impact on migration patterns in the corridors. Over
the past decade, all four, including the once-depopulating Great Plains, have grown considerably more
quickly than the national average.
This shift is driven partly by a steady migration from
the expensive ocean coasts toward the interior. For
generations, the corridors lost population, particularly their young and better-educated, to the great
cities of the East and West Coasts, as well as Chicago.
Over the last decade, the pattern has been reversed
for many of these regions, with many domestic migrants coming from the New York, Los Angeles, San
Francisco, Chicago, and Boston areas.
Even though net migration has slowed since the onset of the recession, the overall trend, from the coasts
and Chicago to the corridors, has continued apace.
Texas Plains cities such as Dallas have remained
migration magnets, as have some southeastern cities-notably, Charlotte and Nashville. Third Coast
cities such as Houston and Tampa continue to attract
people; the Intermountain West major cities, including Denver and Salt Lake City, have also notched
Most major cities in the corridors have positive net migration from the coasts (i.e., more people come to these
cities from Boston and Los Angeles than go to those places from the corridor cities). A review of migration
patterns over the past decade shows Houston-the
largest metropolitan region in the corridors-gaining
residents from most other parts of the country, particularly from the Northeast and California.
New Orleans is the only Third Coast metropolitan
area that has experienced significant outflows over
the past decade. Once the most important Gulf metropolis, it suffered strong out-migration even before
Hurricane Katrina in 2005; over the past decade, since the storm, it suffered the most out-migration
of all major Third Coast communities.
Yet in the past few years, this situation has turned
around dramatically. With a recovering economy,
paced by an expanding energy and entertainment
sector, the New Orleans region has become a magnet
for new migrants.
Equally striking have been the changes in the Great
Plains. Once famous as a place to be fled by young, ambitious natives, its cities have increasingly drawn migrants
from the coasts. Although some rural communities in
the Great Plains, as elsewhere, have lost population, the
overall region grew 14 percent in the past decade-far
better than the national average of 9 percent.
The vast majority of this growth took place in the region's metropolitan areas. Over the past decade, even
smaller metropolitan areas did well, growing by over
12 percent. The region's "micropolitan" places with
a population of 10,000-50,000, grew by 5 percent,
following years of stagnation.
The biggest changes have occurred in the larger metropolitan areas. Over the past decade, Dallas-Fort
Worth, Oklahoma City, Omaha, Sioux Falls, and
Fargo all grew two to three times more quickly than
much-heralded comeback megacities such as New
York, Boston, San Francisco, and Chicago. This
growth in the Great Plains cities relative to the great
coastal metropolitan areas was largely unanticipated
and has been widely ignored by the national press.
There may well be a link between this growth history and the larger migration patterns that now
favor corridor communities. "Okies" once flocked to
California, for example; but more people now leave
the Golden State for Oklahoma.
This migratory pattern holds in the two other corridors as well. The Southeast has, over the past decade,
had steady in-migration, particularly from the Northeast. Over the last decade, the Southeast corridor
had some of the strongest population growth-13
percent (compared with 9 percent for the nation as
a whole). This was particularly true of the region's
largest metropolitan areas, which grew far faster than
their counterparts in the Northeast or California.
Virtually all major urban regions of the Southeast
have had strong in-migration from the rest of the country. Much of this growth has come at the expense
of other states, especially in the Northeast. This is
notable in slower-growing cities such as Atlanta, as
well as in more economically buoyant places such as
Charlotte, Raleigh-Durham, and Nashville.
In the Intermountain West, the Denver area has
continued-even in tough times-to draw migrants
from around the country-most notably, from
Southern California and the Bay Area. This brain
drain out of California has been at the core of the
Denver region's emergence as a key tech area and
potential rival of Silicon Valley.
The same kind of shift has taken place in the Salt
Lake City region. For generations, educated people
from the area-many of them Mormons-migrated
to the Atlantic and Pacific coasts for opportunities.
But increasingly, the net migration flows have favored
Salt Lake City. Workers who might have moved to
California have instead stayed, while people elsewhere
have moved to the area, attracted by its natural beauty
and proximity to the mountains. Others from the
East and West Coasts have moved for jobs in burgeoning industries such as finance and technology,
both of which have established a major presence in
Salt Lake City.
Even as they become net importers of talented people,
the growth corridors are the areas with the fastestgrowing population of children, a consequence of a
migration of young families from the coasts and of
a younger population (which means a larger surplus
of births over deaths than the national average). The
leading areas for young families in terms of growth
have been in Utah and in the great Texas cities; in
contrast, the population under 17 has declined in
New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, and the Bay Area.
Immigrants Head to the Corridors
Migration from abroad has followed the same general
pattern as migration within the U.S.: the growth
corridors are attracting more new arrivals than ever.
Although the largest numbers of foreign immigrants
continue to move into the traditional gateway cities
(such as New York, Los Angeles, San Francisco, and
Miami), the greatest rate of growth in this population is found inside the corridors. Between 2000
and 2011, the foreign-born population of Nashville
and Charlotte doubled. Many other corridor cities,
including Tampa, Oklahoma City, and Atlanta, expanded their immigrant population by 50 percent or
more. In contrast, New York's foreign-born population expanded only by 12 percent and Los Angeles's
by less than 3 percent.
Houston and Dallas already have a higher rate of
international immigration than such traditional
magnets as Chicago, Washington, and Philadelphia.
A recent Rice University study found that Houston
now surpassed New York as the country's most racially
and ethnically diverse area.
Today, Third Coast ports Brownsville, Tampa, and
Houston have some of the highest rates of foreign immigration in the nation. Traditionally, this migration
has come largely from Mexico and Latin America, but
newcomers are increasingly arriving from Asia as well.
Over the past decade, Houston's Asian population has
expanded by 160,000, or 70 percent, and the city is
now home to the eighth-largest Asian population
in the nation. Houston's Asian migration is growing 50 percent faster than migration flows to such
established Asian hubs as New York, San Francisco,
Los Angeles, and Seattle.
Similar patterns can be seen in international migration to the
Southeast and the Great Plains. The latter-once seen as lily-white,
with pockets of Native Americans-is becoming less and less homogeneous,
largely because of Hispanic migration. The Great Plains region now is
as ethnically diverse as the rest of the country.
Foreign immigration to the Great Plains, which was
slow for generations, has become a major force and a
prime contributor to the region's demographic recovery. For many immigrants, the prospect of regular pay
at food-processing plants or in the energy industry
is far more attractive than the generally lower-paid
service work in traditional, more expensive, large
Cost and Quality: A New Perspective
Economic opportunity is only one component of this
shift in migration patterns. Another key driver is the cost of living, particularly housing. Cost differentials
among regions in terms of housing prices have always
existed, but those differences have expanded over the
past two decades. Research by Wendell Cox, based
on the 2010 census, shows that lower-cost regions
have been attracting larger numbers of domestic
migrants than those with higher housing costs. It is
also in the coastal metropolitan areas of California
and the Northeast, Cox argues, that "smart growth"
policies have driven housing costs up even higher.
Even setting housing aside, corridors tend to have lower prices for
the basket of costs that make up a family budget. Therefore, corridor
regions offer not only higher incomes but also more bang for the buck
than most large coastal metropolitan areas. When adjusted for cost of
living, wage earners in Houston, Dallas, and Austin, as well as most
corridor cities, earn much more than residents of New York or Los
Faced with these indicators that favor the corridors,
boosters of America's dense coastal cities suggest that
what these traditional cities lose by the numbers
are made up with "quality" migration of educated
people: "The Feet are moving south and west while
the Brains are moving toward coastal cities," states
Derek Thompson of The Atlantic.
Coastal mega-regions such as New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco have long enjoyed the largest
overall increase in population with bachelor's degrees
over the past decade. Yet the percentage growth of
educated people has now become much higher in
major growth-corridor cities. Indeed, the fastest increase in educated people-measured by increases in
numbers of B.A. and B.S. degrees-can be seen across
the fast-growing corridor mega-regions in Texas, the
Salt Lake area, and Denver, as well as smaller, thriving "micropolitan" areas in the Great Plains, such as
Omaha, Sioux Falls, and Fargo.
Over time, we expect that overall migration patterns driven by housing costs will shape educated
migration, too. This trend could become even more
pronounced when the housing market recovers further and homeowners in the Northeast are again able
to sell their houses. The regional price differentials
could make many of those people "equity refugees":
by simply trading their old northeastern house for
one in a corridor, they will gain considerable wealth.
PART 3: How Growth is Happening
We have described where the growth corridors are and why these regions are
thriving. We now turn to the particular
economic landscape of the regions to map which
sectors are growing-in other words, precisely how
their economies are succeeding.
The Energy Boom
As we've mentioned, the tangible economy of commodities is an
important driver of growth in three corridors: the Great Plains, Third
Coast, and Intermountain West. Five of the eight largest
energy-producing companies in the U.S. are located in these corridors.
Over the past decade, the national share of domestic
oil and gas production that takes place in the corridors has steadily increased, just as the nation has had
a resurgence in domestic oil and gas production. In
2011, the U.S. became a net exporter of petroleum
products for the first time in 62 years. American
imports of raw petroleum have fallen from a high of
60 percent of total to less than 46 percent.
With the exception of growth in the Pennsylvania Ohio region, the American energy boom of the past
decade has been a corridor phenomenon. Of the top
five states with gains in energy-related employment,
four are in the corridors, including leader Texas and
In the growth corridors, Texas, Oklahoma, and Colorado have created the most new energy-related jobs.
Texas alone has added more than 200,000 jobs in its
oil and gas sector over the past decade; Oklahoma
has gained some 45,000. These jobs have been an
outstanding driver of high-wage employment, with
an average salary of over $75,000 a year.
as a percentage of new jobs, energy development had
the greatest impact in North Dakota, which has seen
a fourfold increase in such positions since 2000.
This exceptional growth is concentrated, at least
in part, in the corridors because other regions have
chosen not to exploit their resources. Neither California, with its vast oil and gas resources, nor New
York, with its sizable shale reserves, has moved to
develop these assets-despite the fact that in New
York State, Manhattan Institute studies show that
such development would bring in $1.7 billion for
the state economy by 2015.
In contrast, the energy boom has created an enormous surge in high-wage jobs across the three affected
corridors, which has helped them stave off the worst
effects of the recession.
TThis energy boom has had perhaps its most disproportionate impact in the economies of the Great
Plains. Over the past decade, that region has added
nearly 150,000 energy jobs, which pay well above the national average. Most major metropolitan areas
in the Great Plains gained energy jobs over the past
decade. Dallas-Fort Worth gained more than 17,000;
Oklahoma City, 16,000; and Midland, Texas, more
This growth continued through much
of the recession.
Like the Great Plains, the Third Coast has ridden
the energy wave. The area produces roughly half the
country's oil and-after the setback of the Deepwater
Horizon blowout in 2010, which caused considerable
dislocation-now seems set to increase its output in the
coming decades. Among America's major cities, none
has benefited more from the surge in energy jobs than
Houston, home to more than 230,000 energy workers.
The Intermountain West's ascendancy, like that of
the Third Coast and the Great Plains, stems largely from commodity development, particularly energy.
Over the last decade, the area has added more than
14,000 energy-related jobs, contributing to the
growth of ancillary services in cities such as Denver
and Salt Lake City.
Unless it is stopped by regulatory constraints, this
energy boom could be just in its infancy. New finds
in the Wattenberg Field north of Denver alone could
contain more than a billion barrels of recoverable oil
and natural gas, placing it on the same level as the
huge Eagle Ford find in south Texas and the Bakken
Field in western North Dakota. Another find, the
Green River formation in Wyoming, could contain
an astounding 1.4 trillion barrels of oil shale.
The Manufacturing Boom
There are a number of reasons to expect widespread
industrial expansion in the growth corridors. One is
the energy boom that we've mentioned. Energy-sector
expansion will boost manufacturing along the Gulf
Coast, with its burgeoning petrochemical complex.
The boom could also create, according to a recent
PricewaterhouseCoopers study, more than a million
industrial jobs nationwide to supply the industry and
will result in lower energy costs.
Investment in large
manufacturing plants is now conducted carefully,
weighing a host of factors such as incentives, taxes,
real-estate conditions, and workforce. Strong probusiness regimes place the corridors in an excellent
position for future growth.
Other drivers will spur increased manufacturing production in all four growth corridors, particularly the
Southeast. According to a recent Boston Consulting
Group report, rising wage rates in China, the advantage of nearness to the huge North American market,
and technological advances are all making domestic
manufacturing increasingly attractive. This "reallocation of global manufacturing," the report maintains,
"is in its very early phases." This, it concludes, will
make some U.S. states-such as South Carolina,
Alabama, and Tennessee-"among the least expensive
production sites in the industrialized world."
Given the huge productivity gains associated with
modern manufacturing, the overall job impacts of
this trend will not be huge. But industrial growth
tends to spark expansion in service sectors
attracts considerable investment into communities
where new plants open.
Industrial growth has shifted from other parts of the
nation to all the corridors. Partly because of favorable business conditions, manufacturers in the Great
Plains region survived the Great Recession with fewer
layoffs than the rest of the country. Since 2010, industrial employment has expanded at twice the national
rate across the Great Plains region, with the greatest
gains in the region's smaller cities. Since 2007, the
region's share of manufactured exports has grown
from 19 percent to 21 percent of the nation's total.
A New Industrial Heartland
The corridors' strong pro-business culture is particularly critical for tangible industries. Over the past
decade, many states along the Third Coast have been primary beneficiaries of new petrochemical plants,
establishments rarely sought after in the Northeast
or California. This is particularly notable in Houston, which has had one of the strongest increases in
manufacturing over the past decade of any major city.
The Southeast corridor's increasing focus on heavier
industry-notably, automobiles and related suppliers-provides generally better-paying employment
than its traditional manufacturing, which was concentrated in lower-wage industries such as textiles
and furniture. Several factors have contributed to the
Southeast's ascendancy in heavy manufacturing. Land
is cheap and plentiful, and the area is serviced by a good
transportation system, including access to ports.
fact, South Carolina exports more automobiles than
any other state through its port of Charleston-many
produced by the mammoth BMW facility in Spartanburg. In 2011, the state boasted a 21 percent increase
in exports, largely from manufactured goods.
The low rate of union membership in the region
could also be a factor attracting industry. The percentage of workers in every southeastern state who
belong to a union falls well below the national 2011
average of 11.8 percent.
In the Carolinas, as well as
Georgia and Tennessee, the rate is below 5 percent.
Even Alabama, with the highest union percentage
in the region, stands at 10 percent, still below the
In traditional heavy industries in the Southeast, much
of the decade's growth has come from overseas firms,
which generally lack legacy relationships with established unions. Ever since Toyota opened up a plant
in Georgetown, Kentucky, in 1985, attracting foreign
automakers has figured greatly in regional economic
development. The Southeast witnessed a flurry of
new automotive assembly efforts in 2011-perhaps
most notably, Toyota's Blue Springs plant. And
Mercedes-Benz announced that it will invest $350
million to add capacity to its plant outside Tuscaloosa,
joining Navistar, the nation's top manufacturer of
school buses and medium-duty trucks, which also
announced plans to expand in Alabama.
vast majority of new U.S. investments made by auto companies have come
into this corridor, catapulting Alabama and Kentucky into the nation's
fourth- and fifth-largest producers of cars and trucks.
Almost a quarter of all project announcements made in Alabama during 2011 were related
to the automotive sector.
The automobile-manufacturing sector in Alabama grew an astonishing 466
percent between 2001 and 2011.
In neighboring Tennessee, 11 automotive-related
projects totaling $300 million have been announced
since summer 2011.
Although most new developments are tied to foreign auto manufacturers, GM
announced in September 2011 that it would make
an initial investment of $61 million in its previously
shuttered assembly plant in Spring Hill, Tennessee,
to manufacture the Chevrolet Equinox.
recently announced plans to hire 800 more workers
at its Chattanooga plant to meet demand for its
popular Passat model, boosting total employment
at that plant to 3,700.
A commissioner from the
state's economic development office recently said that
a third of all manufacturing jobs in Tennessee now
relate to the automotive sector.
As a result of all this automobile-related expansion,
the Southeast is rapidly emerging as a serious rival
to the traditional Great Lakes-based industrial belt.
Companies such as Mercedes, Honda, and Hyundai
have established complex supplier chains, linked
largely to the industrial Third Coast port of Mobile.
The Southeast is rapidly becoming a prime competitor not only of the industrial Midwest but of firms
in Europe, Asia, and Latin America.
Booming Aerospace and High-Tech
The Southeast has also moved aggressively into aerospace and other high-tech industries. Airbus recently
opened a $600 million plant in Mobile, and Boeing
has announced plans to assemble its new Dreamliner
in Charleston. Mississippi, too, has seen marked
growth in aerospace,
while Georgia's burgeoning
aerospace industry is ranked sixth in the nation.
The Third Coast corridor stretching from Florida to
Louisiana trails only California, Toulouse (France),
and the Seattle-Tacoma region in the number of
aerospace jobs created globally.
Technology-based growth has become more commonplace throughout the four corridors. All the
corridors have greatly outperformed the rest of the
country in creating new science, technical, and professional jobs.
The shift to high tech has been most dramatic in the
Intermountain West. The area, particularly Denver
and the Salt Lake-Provo metropolis, has had the
highest growth in professional, technical, and scientific services-an astounding 30 percent, more than
twice the national average and the highest of any of
Nowhere is the shift toward the Intermountain West
clearer than in Utah. There is now a plethora of high-tech firms, including Intel, Adobe, Twitter, and eBay,
with large operations along Utah's Wasatch Front
from Salt Lake City to Provo.
This development is not hard to understand. Energy
costs in Utah are almost 50 percent below those in
California, and Colorado's costs are lower by a similar
margin. The cost of real estate for manufacturing
in Utah and Colorado is 60 percent lower than in
Given the corridor's generally more
favorable business climate and lower housing prices,
high-tech shifts from California to the Intermountain
West are likely to continue, particularly as California
continues to pursue a high-cost, high-tax approach
to its economic future.
At some point, the Intermountain West could
well become a true rival of Silicon Valley, as more
trained workers and entrepreneurs flock to the
area. Its already buoyant level of tech-based activity
recently led the U.S. patent and trademark office
to open its first branch in one of the corridors,
based in Denver. Colorado already ranks tenth in
the nation in per-capita patents.
The Rise of Latin America
The emergence of the corridors comes amid major
changes in the nation's global focus. Increasingly,
U.S. trade has been shifting toward Latin America,
a fast-growing and nearby market. Rather than following the old east-west orientation, the country's
future growth may be moving along a north-south
axis, accelerated not only by Latin American growth
but by the expansion of the corridor economies.
There are several proposals to accelerate this process
by developing new transport linkages from the Great
Plains to the nation's southern rim.
This activity is most fevered on the Third Coast.
Historically, the region, particularly its once-dominant city, New Orleans, was tied primarily to the
planter economy of the Caribbean basin, as well as
to markets in Europe and the Northeast. But in the
late nineteenth century and into the twentieth, the
focus of trade first favored East Coast ports, with easy
connections to Europe, and then the West Coast,
particularly the Los Angeles-Long Beach area, with
its extensive direct links to Asia.
In the twenty-first century, this pattern has begun to
change. Since 2003, the Third Coast's share of U.S.
exports has grown from 10 percent to 16 percent
and from $76 billion to $234 billion. The region is
now home to several of the country's leading ports,
led by Houston and New Orleans, which also boast
the first- and second-fastest growth in custom district
traffic among the top five districts, outpacing New
York, Los Angeles, and Detroit.
This reflects a major shift in trade patterns. In the
1980s, California's Pacific ports overtook those of
the East Coast to become the top import-export
sites in the United States. But now, U.S. trade with
Mexico, South America, and the Caribbean basin
has expanded rapidly. Over the last decade, for
example, Third Coast trade with South America
and Caribbean countries increased by 167 percent,
far outpacing increases in the region's trade with
Europe and Asia.
The historical emergence of Latin America is critical
to the Third Coast's development. With 600 million
people, including a middle class of some 400 million,
Latin America represents one of the world's great
growth markets. Poverty, although still a reality for
some 200 million residents, has dropped 17 percent
since 1990. Latin America's total GDP is already
larger than Russia's and India's combined-larger,
in fact, than any region's besides the U.S., the E.U.,
In the future, many Third Coast ports will likely
increase trade with Asia. The scheduled 2014
opening of an expanded Panama Canal, with
double its current capacity, will likely shift some
Asian trade from America's West Coast ports to
its Third Coast. Houston will likely benefit most;
the city expects a 15 percent jump in Asian trade
after the canal expansion project is complete. In
contrast to ports in the Northeast and California,
virtually all the Third Coast ports-and many on
the southeast littoral as well-are in the process
of large-scale expansions.
PART 4: America's Future and the Growth Corridors
The rise of the four growth corridors presents
a great opportunity for the United States in
the coming decades. Throughout history, as
the historian Fernand Braudel notes, core economies "took advantage of the backwardness and inferiority"
of the periphery.
In the corridors, though, we see the
periphery catching up to-indeed, outpacing-the
twentieth-century core of the American economy.
This development will do more than keep the U.S.
economy growing: it will also spur new relationships
between old urban centers and emerging ones-relationships that will be crucial to the new globalized
economy of the twenty-first century.
To successfully navigate these changes, the United
States will have to return to the kind of expansive
agenda that characterized the country until recent
times. Early in U.S. history, leaders such as Henry Clay
and John C. Calhoun supported an elaborate infrastructure to link cities with less developed regions and
generate greater economic growth. "Let us then bind
the Republic together with a perfect system of roads
and canals. Let us conquer space," Calhoun suggested.
These "internal improvements," to use the nineteenth-century phrase, were long a fundamental
American strategy for economic growth. The development of canals, followed by the rail, freeway, and
air-transport system, bound this vast country together, creating the greatest economic power in world
history. The New Deal and its political successors,
including the Eisenhower administration's emphasis
on water development, power, and transportation,
set the stage for the country's great postwar boom.
Policymakers in the corridors as well as outside need
to remember the critical role that our continental
expanse has played in our past and could play in our
future. For better or worse, America will never be
orderly and dense like Japan or Korea, nor will it be
a capital-city-dominated economy such as the United Kingdom or France. Instead, the United States is a
constantly changing mosaic of boom regions, mature
regions, and declining regions. Opportunities for
migrants, companies, and investors arise from accepting this pattern and recognizing where it is playing
out. This was true in the previous two centuries of
American history, and it remains true today.
We expect that over time, the emerging four corridors will act as a
counterweight to the more steadystate, slower-growth alternatives
espoused along the Pacific and in the Northeast. In California, the
"Texas model" has already become a political issue, with even the
state's Democratic lieutenant governor pointing out that some aspects
of the Lone Star State's job-generating policies might merit greater
attention in Sacramento.
The biggest challenge that corridor success poses to
conventional wisdom is in the realm of energy. The
relatively weak economic performance of alternative
energy-notably, solar and wind-may finally dawn
on our policymakers. Regions committed to a rapid
transition to "green" energy, such as California, have
seen energy prices skyrocket and have experienced
only a small number of new, largely subsidized
Unless there is an unexpected shift in the political
economy of the great coastal metropolises, the corridors and especially their ascendant cities-Houston,
Dallas-Fort Worth, Nashville, Charlotte, Raleigh,
New Orleans-will pace our future growth. These
regions will continue to compete, often successfully,
with more established areas in everything from tech
and manufacture to finance and culture. Adding
their vitality to what already exists can only further
strengthen the long-term prospects for this country.
The American story is not near its end, and its economic geography will continue to drive its trajectory.
"He would be a rash prophet," Frederick Jackson
Turner suggested around the turn of the last century,
"who should assert that the expansive character of
American life has now ceased. Movement has been its
dominant fact, and, unless this training has no effect
on a people, the American energy will continually
demand a wider field for its exercise."
- Frederick Jackson Turner, The Significance of the Frontier in American History (New York: Ungar, 1973), p.74
- Analysis of U.S. Census Land Area data, by Mark Schill, Praxis Strategy Group.
- Analysis of EMSI Complete Employment, 2012.3, by Mark Schill, Praxis Strategy Group.
- See http://articles.latimes.com/print/2011/may/15/opinion/la-oe-meyerson-europeans-20110515.
Ibn Khaldun, The Muqaddimah, trans. Franz Rosenthal (Princeton, N.J.: Princeton University Press, 1967), p. 135.
See http://www.energybulletin.net/stories/2012-07-23/dawn-great-california-energy-crash; and U.S. Energy
Information Administration, "U.S. Crude, Natural Gas and Natural Gas Liquids Reserves," November 30, 2010.
- See http://chiefexecutive.net/best-worst-states-for-business-2012.
- See http://taxfoundation.org/article/2012-state-business-tax-climate-index.
- See http://www.alec.org/docs/RSPS_5th_Edition.pdf.
- Gerald T. Prante and Austin John, "Top Marginal Effective Tax Rates by State and by Source of Income, 2012 Tax
Law vs. 2013 Scheduled Tax Law," November 15, 2012, http://ssrn.com/abstract=2176526.
- "California Ugly," The Wall Street Journal, May 14, 2012; http://www.manhattan-institute.org/html/cr_71.htm#.
UG7mz1Fsh8E; and http://www.empirecenter.org/pb/2011/08/migration1080311.cfm.
- Susan Aluise, "Foreign Automakers Drive Growth in U.S. Manufacturing Jobs," Investor Place, June 3, 2011;
- Thomas L. Friedman, "Pass the Books, Hold the Oil," The New York Times, March 11, 2012; Edward B. Barbier, Scarcity and Frontiers (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2011), p. 681; and James Howard Kunstler, The
Long Emergency (New York: Grove.Atlantic ], 2005), p. 185.
- Paul Kennedy, Preparing for the 21st Century (New York: Random House, 1993), p. 335; Norbert Walker, "Germany's Hidden Weaknesses," The New York Times,
February 9, 2012; David Winning and Min-Jeong Lee,"Asia Bids for
Australia's Rich Resources," The New York Times, February 15, 2011; and
Peter Muello, "New Rig Brings Brazil Oil Self-Sufficiency," Associated
Press, April 21, 2006.
- Joseph W. Glauber, "Prospects for the U.S. Farm Economy in 2011,"
http://www.usda.gov/documents/Glauber_Joe_Speech.pdf [ February 21, 2011.
- Shepard Daniel with Anuradha Mittal, "The Great Land Grab: Rush for World's Farmland Threatens Food Security
for the Poor," Oakland Institute, 2009, p. 6; and Seth Lubove, "Betting the Farm-and Winning,"
The Washington Post, August 21, 2011.
- See http://colleges.usnews.rankingsandreviews.com/best-colleges/rankings/national-universities.
- 20 "Educational Attainment in the United States: 2009," U.S. Census Bureau, p. 11.
NCHEMS Information Center for Higher Education Policymaking and Analysis, 2009 figures, http://www.higheredinfo.org/dbrowser/index.php?submeasure=331&year=2009&level=nation&mode=graph&state=0.
- Ibid., 2003 figures, http://www.higheredinfo.org/dbrowser/index.php?submeasure=337&year=2003&level=natio
- David Osborne, "Born on the Bayou: A New Model for American Education," Third Way, September 2012.
- See http://www.newgeography.com/content/002044-americas-biggest-brain-magnets.
Andy Sywak, "The South Rises Again! (in Automobile Manufacturing, That Is)," NewGeography.com, July 23,
- Idem, "Toyota: How Mississippi Engineered the Blue Springs Deal," NewGeography.com, November 17, 2011, http://www.newgeography.com/content/002529-toyota-how-mississippi-engineered-blue-springs-deal.
- Ibid.; and "Toyota to Build Prius Hybrid in U.S.," Agence-France Press, July 10, 2008.
- U.S. decennial census.
Utah Business and Economic Profile, edcUtah[, Salt Lake City, 2012.
- Based on decennial census.
- See http://usatoday30.usatoday.com/money/economy/2010-10-12-oklahoma12_CV_N.htm.
- Nelson D. Schwartz, "Financial Giants Are Moving Jobs Off Wall Street," The New York Times, July 2, 2012.
- Douglas Stanglin, "Study: Houston Area Passes NYC as the Nation's Most Diverse," USA Today, March 8, 2012.
- See http://www.demographia.com/db-bubblehaff.pdf; and http://www.newgeography.com/content/00512-moving-flyover-country.
- See http://www.theatlantic.com/business/archive/2010/12/americas-bipolar-population-shift/68709.
- Brian Chappatta, "U.S. Population Migrates from Coasts for Gigantic' Income Boost," Bloomberg News,
December 21, 2011; and Jennifer Medina and Sabrina Tavernise, "Economy Alters How Americans Are Moving,"
The New York Times, October 27, 2011.
Liam Pleven and Russell Gold, "U.S. Nears Milestone: Net Fuel Exporter," The Wall Street Journal, November 30,
2011; Daniel Yergin, "America's New Energy Security," The Wall Street Journal,
December 12, 2011; Vinod Dar, "World's Largest Producer of Natural Gas?
Now It's the U.S.," SeekingAlpha.com, January 13, 2010; and Robert
Bryce, "America Needs the Shale Revolution," The Wall Street Journal, June 13, 2011.
- Based on Praxis Strategy Group estimates using http://www.economicmodeling.com/ data
- See http://www.manhattan-institute.org/html/eper_09.htm.
- Brenda Cronin, "Oil Patch Bucks Income Drop," The Wall Street Journal, February 2, 2011.
- An analysis of QCEW workers, non-QCEW workers, and self-employed, EMSI class of worker 2012.3, by Mark
Schill, Praxis Strategy Group.
- "The Impact of Decreased and Delayed Drilling Permit Approvals on Gulf of Mexico Businesses," Greater New
Orleans Inc., January 30, 2012; Tom Fowler, "After Spill, Gulf Oil Drilling Rebounds," The Wall Street Journal,
September 21, 2012; and Tom Fowler, "Return to the Gulf," The Wall Street Journal, December 15, 2011.
- Russell Gold, "Anadarko Raises Colorado Oil Tally," The Wall Street Journal, November 15, 2011; and John
Merline, "Scarce Oil? U.S. Has Sixty Times More than Obama Claims," Investor's Business Daily, March 14, 2012.
- Ed Morse, "Move Over, OPEC-Here We Come," The Wall Street Journal, March 19, 2012; Wendy Koch, "Oil
Boomlet Sweeps U.S. as Exports and Production Rise," USA Today, December 19, 2011; http://www.pwc.com/us/en/press-releases/2011/abundance-of-shale-gas.jhtml; and Guy Chazan, "Big Oil Heads
Back Home," The Wall Street Journal, December 5, 2011.
- See http://www.cookassociates.com/media-center/press-releases/2011-press-releases--/bid/79967/SURVEY-85-ofmanufacturing-executives; and Harold L. Sirkin, Michael Zinser, and Douglas Hohner, "Made in America, Again:
Why Manufacturing Will Return to the U.S.," Boston Consulting Group, August 2011.
- See http://www.esa.doc.gov/Reports/engines-growth-manufacturing-industries-us-economy-0.
- Foreign Trade Division, U.S. Census.
- Joshua Wright, "Data Spotlight: Ranking States by Their Dependence on Manufacturing," NewGeography.
com, March 21, 2012, http://www.newgeography.com/content/002737-data-spotlight-ranking-states-theirdependence-manufacturing?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+Newge
- David Slade, "Exports on Rise through Port of Charleston," The Post and Courier, March 21, 2012, http://postandcourier.com/article/20120321/PC05/303219912; and John Bussey, "An Engine Down South,"
The Wall Street Journal, July 5, 2012.
- Bureau of Labor Statistics, http://www.bls.gov/news.release/union2.nr0.htm.
- Marian Accardi, "Economic Development Leaders, Gov. Robert Bentley Speak at Automotive Conference in
Huntsville," The Huntsville Times, November 4, 2011.
- Wright, "Data Spotlight."
- Nick Bunkley, "Ex-Saturn Plant to Reopen, and G.M. to Add 700 Jobs," The New York Times, November 21,
- Jerry Hirsch, "Volkswagen to Add 800 Jobs at U.S. Factory," Los Angeles Times, March 23, 2012.
- Accardi, "Economic Development Leaders."
- See http://www.ainonline.com/aviation-news/2012-07-10/americas-south-rises-again-aerospace-wave-mississippi.
- See http://www.aviationweek.com/Article.aspx?id=/article-xml/awx_07_11_2012_p0-475640.xml; http://online.wsj.com/article/SB10000872396390444914904577615920149581932.html; http://selectgeorgia.com/publications/Aerospace-Industry-Report-Feb-2012.pdf; and http://www.ainonline.com/aviationnews/2012-07-10/americas-south-rises-again-aerospace-wave-mississippi.
- See http://blog.al.com/live/2012/09/airbus_growth_forecast_bodes_w.html.
See http://www.electricchoice.com/electricity-prices-by-state.php; and "Utah Manufacturing Industry," Economic
Development Corporation of Utah, 2012.
- See http://www.bizjournals.com/denver/print-edition/2012/07/20/patent-office-marks-a-denver-area.html?page=all.
- Greater Houston Partnership calculations based on data from WISERTrade: International Trade Database.
- Raul Rivera, "Puncturing the 4 Myths about Latin America," Quarterly Americas (spring 2011); and David
Luhnow, "Poverty Rates Fall in Latin America," The Wall Street Journal, December 1, 2011
Susannah Jacob, "Canal Expansion Raises Expectations and Questions," The New York Times, February 18, 2012.
- Fernand Braudel, The Perspective of the World, trans. Sian Reynolds (Berkeley: University of California Press,
1979), p. 91.
- David E. Nye, America as Second Creation (Cambridge, Mass.: MIT Press, 2003), pp. 147, 246.
- See http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2011-04-14/california-begs-texas-for-job-recipe-with-growth-tradingplaces.html.
- "The Price of Green Virtue," The Wall Street Journal, July 7, 2012; Sheila McNulty, "Uneven Incentives Hamper
Growth," Financial Times, January 18, 2011; Russell Gold, "Wind, Solar Energy Still Face Big Hurdles," The Wall
Street Journal, March 31, 2011; Robert Samuelson, "Energy Pipedreams," The Washington Post, June 21, 2010;
and Aaron Glantz, "Number of Green Jobs Fails to Live Up to Promises," The New York Times, August 18, 2011.
- Frederick Jackson Turner, p. 57.