• Time. It’s going to take a while. In 2009, when Pittsburgh hosted the G-20 Summit of Industrialized Nations, the world suddenly noticed that the one-time Steel City had done a remarkable job of making over itself. But Pittsburgh had been working at it for more than 30 years, ever since the American steel industry was overtaken by foreign steel. ...• Invest in people, not just projects. What about tax breaks for bright college graduates who agree to stay home? ...• St. Louis, even as it tries to keep its best and brightest, must cultivate the loyalty of those who have left. You can see them on television wearing Cardinals hats at away games; an “alumni club” could spread the word — not only is this a good place to be from; but it also is a good place to be.
There is a laundry list of considerations and I cherry-picked three to make a point. I don't think the author of the piece has a good understanding of what other communities have done and therefore gives bad advice to the readership. The Pittsburgh reference might be rewritten to state that the world took 30 years to notice the city's make over.
More troubling is the policy suggestion for talent retention. Tax breaks? Again? Sigh ...
St. Louis needs to be more aware of what is going on in other regions, other states. Neighboring Iowa is a good guide, having tried just about everything under the sun to deal with brain drain. Also, Joel Kotkin provided an assessment of the St. Louis talent landscape that the leadership should revisit. There are more than a few demographic surprises in the report.
Unfortunately, St. Louis is preparing to go the road more traveled and the excellent newspaper series will be in vain. That's exactly what happened in Cleveland. I expect business as usual in St. Louis.