Economic Impact Review

I can't tell you how many times I've heard reports to the effect: "<<insert paid consulting company name here>> has shown that for every $1 the state invests in <<insert your favorite activity here such as a farmers market, beef packing plant, bio-fuel plant, new community center, etc.>> our state/city/town will create <<insert some arbitrarily large number here>> additional jobs.

Some of these claims are no doubt accurate, but all too often it is difficult to know how the estimates were generated, what assumptions led to the job-creating estimates, how sensitive the estimates are to the assumptions, or if there are better uses for the investment dollars on the margin.

Fortunately, my occasional co-author Matt Rousu has started up a new website reviewing economic impact studies: Economic Impact Review.

This is a worthwhile endeavor and I wish him the best of luck with the project.