What is Economic Development? – An Apolitical Discussion

By the Los Alamos Entrepreneurs’ Network

On a personal level, economic development encompasses all that one does to enhance his or her potential to garner a greater flow of income.

This income is related to the value the individual delivers in return. But the term economic development is usually applied at the community level and refers to those activities the community collectively pursues for the greater economic vitality of the community.

This makes the application of economic development a more complex issue tied to the integrated collective ideas of the community.

Rephrasing the title question, what is economic development for a community? Is it more jobs? Is it more opportunity for members of the community to pursue their own endeavors? Is it tied to population growth? Or is it increasing the revenue base of the community without raising taxes? And tied to the myriad of questions, what sort of investments is the community willing to take and what sort of risks is the community willing to take? What contributes to and fosters economic development? And how do you measure the return on investment?

The Los Alamos Entrepreneurs’ Network is interested in growing the economic development opportunities for its members and, as a result, has its own inherent bias.

But so does every participant in the discussion. Taking a first principals approach requires a definition of terms even if only applicable to an isolated community.

The Network is a community within a community and needs a definition of economic development.

The public is invited to joiin members of the Los Alamos Entrepreneurs’ Network at 6:30 p.m. Thursday Oct. 11, at The Hive for what will be a lively discussion.

The Hive is at 134 N.M. 4 in White Rock.