Study: State Should Consider Possible Economic Pitfalls

Inside INdiana Business is reporting that a new report from the Center for Regional Development at Purdue University says state officials must consider factors that could hinder Indiana’s ability to become a major national and global economic player. The report says key challenges include educational levels and the types of jobs offered in certain parts of the state.

Purdue says the goal of the report, titled “People and Places: The Nature and Location of Talent in Indiana,” is to give economic development officials more ideas to utilize when designing plans to boost investment throughout the state. Lionel Beaulieu, director the Center for Regional Development and main author of the report, says the ability to achieve long-term economic progress will rest, in part, on the state’s ability to produce, retain and attract talent.

“Nevertheless, ramping up its supply of educated and skilled workers will not be enough,” said Beaulieu. “Of equal importance will be the need to accelerate the number of quality jobs that can help stem the outflow of talent to other parts of the U.S. and beyond.”

Some of the challenges outlined in the report include:

  • Indiana has failed to keep pace with other U.S. states in the proportion of adults with a bachelor’s degree or higher.
  • A low number of adults who have completed an associates or technical degree.
  • Accelerating the number of available STEM-related jobs in order to retain STEM graduates in the state.
  • Addressing gender-based salary disparities in order to attract women employees.
  • Growing the number of STEM jobs and knowledge/creative positions in nonmetropolitan areas of the state.

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