Guest blog post by Matt Erskine, Deputy Assistant Secretary for Economic Development
Earlier this week, I was honored to provide the keynote address at the International Economic Development Council’s (IEDC) 2014 Federal Economic Development Forum. Dr. Pat Gallagher, NIST Director performing the duties of Deputy Secretary and Mark Doms, Under Secretary for Economic Affairs, also participated in the forum. Both applauded the important work of the IEDC in fostering economic growth in communities across America.
The work that IEDC members are doing in communities here and around the globe is critical, timely and mirrors our philosophy at EDA: only by working together in effective, strong, and sustainable regional partnerships will we realize our collective economic vision.
In fact, the three guiding themes of this year’s IEDC Federal Forum – Learn, Teach, and Collaborate – reflect EDA’ core mission to establish a foundation for sustainable job growth through innovation and regional collaboration.
Through our flexible grant programs, EDA provides construction, technical assistance, financing, strategic planning and network building tools that local and regional entities can use to support their communities’ unique economic development strategies and objectives.
Our model of competitive, merit based co-investment in support of strong regional economic development strategies is a proven approach – an approach that always looks to maximize the return on investment and the impact of our assistance in communities.
Today, we are focused on synchronizing federal programs to both maximize federal taxpayer returns and maximize the impact in the communities we serve. By breaking down Washington’s bureaucratic silos, we can be a more effective partner.