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.

Computers In The Wild Guilds And Next Generation Unionism In The Information Revolution

Computers In The Wild Guilds And Next Generation Unionism In The Information Revolution One of the aspects of the information revolution that has had negative implications for many workers is the erosion of the workplace as a basis for long-term security and collective solidarity. The dramatic pace of technological change, [...]

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Collaboration Conflict And Community Building At The Regional Scale Implications For Advocacy Planning

Collaboration Conflict And Community Building At The Regional Scale Implications For Advocacy Planning Some see the regional equity perspective as placing undue emphasis on intersectoral cooperation and the complementarity between growth and equity. Is regional equity a departure from an Advocacy Planning paradigm in which values are central, justice is [...]

Categories: Article|

Brother Can You Spare Some Time? Sustaining Prosperity And Social Inclusion In Americas Metropolitan Regions

Brother Can You Spare Some Time? Sustaining Prosperity And Social Inclusion In Americas Metropolitan Regions Understanding the factors and processes that help regions sustain economic growth has become a topic of increasing interest in recent years. We examine factors associated with the length of ‘growth spells’ for the 184 largest [...]

Categories: Article|

An Option For The Poor 
A Research Audit For Community Based Regionalism In California’s Central Coast

An Option For The Poor 
A Research Audit For Community Based Regionalism In California’s Central Coast Community-based organizations are increasingly interested in tackling issues of regional economic development to address the inequality and resource shortfalls that plague their constituents. Some groups have conducted regional audits to understand the economic and [...]

Categories: Article|

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 10 cents a day, while helping nearly 8 million food workers and 21 million workers [...]

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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 increase unemployment, depress growth and hurt workers. The latest example is Seattle, where Mayor Ed [...]

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In the News

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