Landmark Benchmarking Study Compares Lansing to 11 Peer Regions and Serves as a Blueprint to Build a More Exciting Future for the Region
A recently completed analysis of the Lansing region’s competitiveness relative to other similar thriving regions around the country is expected to serve as a blueprint for developing strategies to strengthen Greater Lansing position on the national and global stage. The first-ever State of the Lansing Region Benchmarking Report was developed as the result of a partnership between the Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce (LRCC), the Lansing Economic Area Partnership (LEAP), and 10 leading business and education stakeholders.
“Our collective future is bright in a highly competitive global economy,” said Tim Daman, president & CEO, LRCC. “However, we must accelerate our efforts to compete for future jobs and investments successfully. One of the first steps was to benchmark our region against thriving communities and identify our competitive strengths, opportunities for growth, and a regional vision.”
“The Lansing region is currently experiencing historic levels of growth with $3.2 billion in current investments. However, the region needs to continue to compete for economic investment and jobs on a national and global scale,” said Bob Trezise, president & CEO, LEAP. “This report will actively guide us toward important goals and strategies that will lead to continued growth. It will not be easy, but we must accept this challenge with confidence.”
LRCC and LEAP commissioned Anderson Economic Group to conduct the benchmarking study. The economic data reflected in the report is from the years 2014-2018, the most recent economic data available at year-end 2019. The resulting inaugural State of the Lansing Region Benchmarking Report compares the Lansing region on 42 indicators relative to 11 peer regions: Ann Arbor, Mich.; Columbus, Ohio; Des Moines, Iowa; Durham, N.C.; Grand Rapids, Mich.; Greenville, S.C.; Hartford, Conn.; Indianapolis, Ind.; Madison Wis.; Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minn., and Nashville, Tenn.
“The number one objective I see for this is to raise awareness for leaders in the Lansing area is that we are competing against some pretty strong other metropolitan areas,” said Patrick Anderson, principal, Anderson Economic Group. “We have strengths to bring to that race and we have weaknesses to address. If we focus on those, we will do well.”
Among the 42 economic indicators, four stood out for short-term strategic focus based on their long-term economic growth; population growth, educational attainment, private sector growth, and affordability.
As partners launched the report in 2019, they did not anticipate a global pandemic, and the resulting disruption is not reflected in the data. Anderson Economic will update the data twice in the next two to four years, which will allow the region to assess the impact of COVID more fully and further adjust strategies and tactics as economic circumstances continue to evolve.
The State of the Region Lansing Benchmarking Report will be introduced at a community roundtable, held virtually at 10 a.m. on Tuesday, May 4. Partners are also planning to establish the Lansing 2025 Pathway to Prosperity Steering Committee, which will develop action strategies from the inaugural State of the Lansing Region Benchmarking Report and propose alignment with existing regional economic plans.
The entire State of the Lansing Region Benchmarking Report can be accessed by visiting www.stateofthelansingregion.com. The public is strongly encouraged to download, print and share the report. Questions can be directed to firstname.lastname@example.org.
“The State of the Lansing Region Benchmarking Report represents an opportunity for business leaders to work together to establish a vision for Lansing’s future,” said Daman. “There is a lot of great work already being done in the region in many of these areas. We need to focus on how we gain alignment and get people working together to move the region forward.”