Books


Equity, Community, and Growth: What the Nation Can Learn From America’s Metropolitan Regions

In the last several years, much has been written about growing economic challenges, increasing income inequality, and political polarization in the United States. This new book by Chris Benner and Manuel Pastor argues that lessons for addressing these national challenges are emerging from a new set of realities in America’s metropolitan regions: first, that inequity is, in fact, bad for economic growth; second, that bringing together the concerns of equity and growth requires concerted local action; and, third, that the fundamental building block for doing this is the creation of diverse and dynamic epistemic (or knowledge) communities, which help to overcome political polarization and help regions address the challenges of economic restructuring and social divides.

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Just Growth: Inclusion and Prosperity in America’s Metropolitan Regions

Breaking new ground in its innovative blend of quantitative and qualitative methods, the book essentially argues that another sort of growth is indeed possible. While offering specific insights for regional leaders and analysts of metropolitan areas, the authors also draw a broader – and quite timely – set of conclusions about how to scale up these efforts to address a U.S. economy still seeking to recover from economic crisis and ameliorate distributional divisions.

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This Could Be the Start of Something Big: How Social Movements for Regional Equity are Transforming Metropolitan America

For nearly two decades, progressives have been dismayed by the steady rise of the right in U.S. politics. Often lost in the gloom and doom about American politics is a striking and sometimes underanalyzed phenomenon: the resurgence of progressive politics and movements at a local level. Across the country, urban coalitions, including labor, faith groups, and community-based organizations, have come together to support living wage laws and fight for transit policies that can move the needle on issues of working poverty. Just as striking as the rise of this progressive resurgence has been its reception among unlikely allies. In places as diverse as Chicago, Atlanta, and San Jose, the usual business resistance to pro-equity policies has changed, particularly when it comes to issues like affordable housing and more efficient transportation systems. To see this change and its possibilities requires that we recognize a new thread running through many local efforts: a perspective and politics that emphasizes “regional equity.”

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Staircases or Treadmills: Labor Market Intermediaries and Economic Opportunity in a Changing Economy

Globalization, technological change, and deregulation have made the American marketplace increasingly competitive in recent decades, but for many workers this “new economy” has entailed heightened job insecurity, lower wages, and scarcer benefits. As the job market has grown more volatile, a variety of labor market intermediaries-organizations that help job seekers find employment-have sprung up, from private temporary agencies to government “One-Stop Career Centers.” In Staircases or Treadmills? Chris Benner, Laura Leete, and Manuel Pastor investigate what approaches are most effective in helping workers to secure jobs with decent wages and benefits, and they provide specific policy recommendations for how job-matching organizations can better serve disadvantaged workers.

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Work in the New Economy: Flexible Labor Markets in Silicon Valley

This book contributes to our understanding of the transformation of work in the information economy, through a detailed examination of labor markets in Silicon Valley. It provides an original and insightful analysis of flexible labor including growing volatility in work demands and increasingly tenuous employment relations. Contributes to our understanding of the transformation of work in the information economy, through a detailed examination of labor markets in Silicon Valley. Provides an original and insightful analysis of flexible labor including growing volatility in work demands and increasingly tenuous employment relations. Examines the increasingly important role of labor market intermediaries.Shows that some workers clearly thrive in this vibrant context, but many face high levels of insecurity admist growing inequality.

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Local and Global: Management of Cities in the Information Age

ordi Borja and Manuel Castells, with Maria Behlil, and Chris Benner

This text challenges the belief that cities will eventually disappear as territorial forms of social organization as new information technologies permit the articulation of social processes without regard for distance, arguing that the specific role of cities will become more important, and proposing that a dynamic and creative relationship be built up between the local and the global. In this way, cities will remain the focus of social organization, political management and cultural expression, equipped to deal with the enormous social and environmental problems of urbanization.

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Publications

Reports, scholarly articles and contributions.

Inclusive Economies Report

In an effort to advance the conceptualization of Inclusive Economies, our research team developed an indicator framework for measuring progress towards economic inclusivity. The Rockefeller Foundation defines an inclusive economy as one in which there is expanded opportunity for more broadly shared prosperity, especially for those facing the greatest [...]

Categories: Report|

Facebook’s Expansion Plans Could Displace Thousands in Menlo Park

The DEIR denies any housing-related impacts from the project, even though it admits that the 6,550 new Facebook employees would exceed Menlo Park’s job growth projections by 296% and increase the city’s workforce by more than 20%. It also understates the number of jobs that the project will create, directly and indirectly, by 24,000 [...]

Categories: In the News|Tags: , |

Whither Resilient Regions? Equity Growth And Community

Whither Resilient Regions? Equity Growth And Community A growing body of research has been suggesting that social equity may contribute to economic growth and resilience at a metropolitan scale, but there is limited research on the underlying mechanisms that make for this potentially happy coincidence of economic vitality, resilience and [...]

Categories: Article|

Retooling For Growth Building A St Century Economy In Americas Older Industrial Areas

Retooling For Growth Building A St Century Economy In Americas Older Industrial Areas Traditional economic theory and standard economic development practices have tended to pose a contradiction of trade-off between inefficiency and equity: what is good for one may be bad for another. The trade-off would seem to be particularly [...]

Categories: Article|

Rethinking Informalizattion Poverty Precarious Jobs And Social Protection

Rethinking Informalizattion Poverty Precarious Jobs And Social Protection Processes of labor market informalization are most frequently examined in the context of poor countries and marginalized workers. Yet, one of the consistent themes in the study of informal work is that informalization is fundamentally shaped by processes of economic restructuring in [...]

Categories: Article|

Regions And Firms In eWork Relocation Dynamics Pittsburghs Calle Centre Industry

Regions And Firms In Ework Relocation Dynamics Pittsburghs Calle Centre Industry This paper attempts to contribute to our theoretical understanding of the relationship between regions and the location dynamics of telemedia employment through and analysis of the regional dynamics shaping up the call center industry in Pittsburgh which has grown [...]

Categories: Article|

In the News

Interviews and mentions of my research in local and national media.

Facebook’s Expansion Plans Could Displace Thousands in Menlo Park

The DEIR denies any housing-related impacts from the project, even though it admits that the 6,550 new Facebook employees would exceed Menlo Park’s job growth projections by 296% and increase the city’s workforce by more than 20%. It also [...]

By | August 4th, 2016|Categories: In the News|Tags: , |0 Comments

Food Day report: Minimum-wage hike would raise food prices pennies, help millions

A new report released today (Wednesday, Oct. 24), national Food Day 2012, says that a proposal pending in Congress to raise the minimum wage would increase retail food prices for American consumers by at most [...]

By | September 18th, 2015|Categories: In the News|Tags: |0 Comments

Silicon Valley’s minimum wage success story

Minimum wage increases are being enacted in cities across the country, from SeaTac, Washington, to Washington, D.C. Wherever a hike is proposed, free market conservatives offer the same dire warnings: Raising the minimum wage will [...]

By | September 18th, 2015|Categories: In the News|Tags: |0 Comments

Campaign seeks to push Seattle minimum wage to $15

Washington already has the nation's highest state minimum wage at $9.19 an hour. Now, there's a push in Seattle, at least, to make it $15. That would mean fast food workers, retail clerks, baristas and [...]

By | September 18th, 2015|Categories: In the News|Tags: |0 Comments

Forum will discuss raising local minimum wage

Progressive Women of Napa Valley is sponsoring a forum to start a community conversation about the economic impact of a local increase in the minimum wage. The organization reports that while Napa County has over [...]

By | September 18th, 2015|Categories: In the News|0 Comments

Guest commentary: Bay Area is not meeting its affordable housing needs

The Bay Area's affordable housing crisis will be solved only through policies and practices that result in the construction of new affordable units. These units will protect against gentrification and displacement, keep families in their [...]

By | September 18th, 2015|Categories: In the News|0 Comments