Featured Research

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The Cost of Arming Schools:
The Price of Stopping a Bad Guy with a Gun

March, 2013
Edward W. Hill
The price of implementing the NRA’s proposal to place an armed security guard in every school building in the nation is nearly $13 billion a year. The opportunity cost to taxpayers for fully protected schools can reach $23 billion. The cost per student approaches $500 and would take up half of federal spending on elementary and secondary education if paid for by the federal government. Isthis the cost of protecting schools? Or, is it just one cost for permitting unlimited access to semi-automatic weapons and large capacity ammunition clips and preventing the potential for mass murder in our schools?

Adding up the "Butcher's Bill" - The Public Health Consequences of America's System of Gun Regulation
March, 2013
Edward W. Hill
In September 2010 a release by the National Rifle Association’s Institute for Legislative Action had the headline: More Guns, Less Crime Again; Gun Ownership Rises to All-Time High, Violent Crime Falls to 35-Year Low. Early in 2013 the NRA-ILA issued a press release on accidents that involve firearms. These releases never misstate facts and footnotes abound. But they limit the facts presented in an attempt to spin the public debate over the impact of firearms regulation by omission.

How Many Guns are in the United States: Americans Own between 262 Million and 310 Million Firearms
March, 2013
Edward W. Hill
No one knows with certainty how many of America’s households own guns or how many guns are in existence. In 2012, the Gallup Organization estimated 44 percent of the households have at least one gun and in 2010 the General Social Survey put the percentage at 32. The best estimates of how many guns are available to the civilian population are between 262 million and 310 million.
The purpose of this report is to show how the estimates of the number of guns in circulation in the United States are derived. The estimates are necessarily rough because of the poor state of information on gun ownership, the lack of consistent registration information, and data on the number of guns that have been destroyed.

Ohio Utica Shale Region Monitor
March, 2013
Kelly Kinahan, Edward W. Hill
This report provides a summary of two economic indicators, local sales receipts and total employment, with the goal of identifying early stage economic activity related to the exploration and early-stage production of oil and gas from the Utica and Marcellus shale reservoirs in the state of Ohio.

Analysis and Economic Impact of the Film Industry in Northeast Ohio & Ohio
June, 2012
Candi Clouse.
Greater Cleveland abounds with the buzz from Hollywood blockbuster movies that have borrowed the city in the last few years. Clevelanders flocked to catch a glimpse of Sandman being pummeled by Spider-Man or Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury roaming down East 9th Street. While these large-scale movies bring both excitement and money to the region, they represent just a small portion of the total film productions that have occurred in Ohio.  

An Analysis of The Economic Potential For Shale Formations In Ohio
May, 2012
Andrew R. Thomas, Iryna Lendel, Prof Edward W. Hill, Prof Douglas Southgate and Prof Robert Chase.
For the first time in over 100 years, Ohio finds itself on the threshold of not only being self-sufficient in the production of oil and gas, but also possibly even being a hydrocarbon exporter. This dramatic renaissance in Ohio’s oil and gas industry comes courtesy of new drilling and completion technologies that has enabled oil and gas producers to extract hydrocarbons from shale reservoirs that heretofore were considered uneconomical to produce, due to the impermeability of the shale formations.

Consolidated Dispatch Center Feasibility Study
November 7, 2011
Daila Shimek, Eugene Kramer, Patrick Johnson, Scott Winograd, Kimberly Renee Vining, Thomas Cozzens and Kevin O'Brien
The report provides an assessment of the feasibility of consolidation of public safety dispatch for three scenarios or combinations of entities in Ashland County, Ohio and Wayne County, Ohio, including the cities of Ashland and Wooster. The report describes the methodology used to assess the feasibility and provides an overview of four case studies of consolidation dispatch centers in Ohio.

Remix Cleveland: The Cleveland Music Sector and Its Economic Impact Executive Summary / Full Report
October 2011
Iryna Lendel, Candice Clouse, Merissa C. Piazza, Ziona Austrian, Sharon Bliss, Kathryn Wertheim Hexter, Renee Constantino, Matthew Hrubey
This study was commissioned by the Community Partnership for Arts and Culture (CPAC) as a starting point for gaining a deeper understanding of the different sectors of the Cleveland arts scene in Cuyahoga County. Its objective is to understand the Cleveland Music Sector, delineate its components, learn its dynamics, and assess the economic impact of music events and venues in Cuyahoga County.

Consolidated Dispatch Center Feasibility Study: Ohio Case Studies

Daila Shimek, Scott Winograd, Kimberly Renee Vining
August 18, 2011
This report includes case studies of consolidated dispatch centers in the United States. Each case study includes descriptions of the governing and operating structure, consolidation process, funding and fee structure, and the successes, challenges and lessons learned by each entity. The results suggest that, although the experiences among consolidated dispatch centers varied, the elements that should contribute to a successful transition are strong leadership, communication with affected employees, ability to compromise, consistency in treatment of employees, development of standard operating procedures, stakeholder inclusion, and beginning consolidation with a clear plan that treats all participants as equal partners.

Revitalizing Distressed Older Suburbs
Kathryn W. Hexter, Edward W. Hill, Brian A. Mikelbank, Benjamin Y. Clark and Charles Post
July 2011
It's no secret that problems usually associated with inner cities have made their way into suburbia. Poverty, unemployment, foreclosures, population losses, underfunded or failing schools, inadequate public services—they're facts of life for millions of people living in distressed, older suburbs across the United States. But what can be done about this? How can the federal government help? What works? This report focuses on predominantly minority suburbs of older, large industrial cities, communities that once were thriving but are now severely distressed and have limited capacities to respond to increasing needs. It supplements census information with a deeper understanding of the underlying forces shaping distressed, older suburbs. It also contributes to a growing body of literature on suburbia in general and on older, inner-ring suburbs in particular. While much has been written about the deleterious effects of living in concentrated poverty in central cities, very little research has examined the problem in distressed suburbs.

Pennsylvania’s True Commonwealth: The State of Manufacturing – Challenges and Opportunities
Edward W. (Ned) Hill, John R. Brandt, Iryna V. Lendel, Faith Noble, Ellen Cyran, Charlie Post, Jim Samuel, Fran Stewart
February 2011
This report builds on the 2004 report, Manufacturing Pennsylvania’s Future, written by Deloitte Consulting and the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs at Cleveland State University. In August 2010, as the negative impact of the Great Recession was beginning to ebb and after a decade of global competitive challenges, the IRC Program embarked on a new round of self-evaluation and assessment. The economic development and nonprofit management research groups at Cleveland State University’s Levin College were engaged to examine the state of manufacturing in the Commonwealth, discover the management practices of the “best of the best” manufacturers in the state, and suggest practice innovations that would enhance the competitive position of Pennsylvania’s manufacturers.

Rising Star: Exploding three myths about the Northeast Ohio Economy
Edward W. (Ned) Hill, John R. Brandt
January 2011
The recent news that Northeast Ohio is helping to lead a nationwide economic recovery initially struck many as the lead-in to another late-night Cleveland insult, something along the lines of: Unfortunately, there isn't much of an export market for pierogis or burning rivers. Cue laughtrack. Ha ha ha. Yet the numbers don't lie, and the region's broad-based resurgence is no joke, rating 10th among 50 U.S metro areas (according to a report from the Brookings Institution and the London School of Economics). But the question on everyone's mind — not just in Akron or Cleveland or Lorain or Youngstown, but in every regional economy — is what comes next. Does our region have the potential to not just survive, but to thrive in a 21st-century economy? The answer for Northeast Ohio is an unequivocal "YES" — but only if the region and its decision-makers can give up three myths about Northeast Ohio's future that hinder our ability to begin the hard work that will make growth and renaissance possible.

Feasibility Study: Consolidated Dispatch Center for Police, Fire and EMS Services
Daila Shimek, Ryan Foster, Holly Cooper, Kevin E. O’Brien, Claudette Robey and Caitlin Johnson
December 2009
This report provides an assessment of the feasibility of consolidation of public safety dispatch for 14 communities in Cuyahoga County, Ohio. The findings are that consolidation of dispatch services among the participating communities would reduce staffing costs by an estimated $1.7 million annually. Consolidation of services would reduce the duplication of services and redundant capital projects. Instead of the duplicate purchase of expensive equipment by several communities, the cost of large capital will be distributed over a larger base of beneficiaries. Centralization will reduce the physical blueprint of dispatch operations which in turn should reduce operating costs such as natural gas, electric and maintenance. Given the proposed investment in high quality equipment, facilities, and staff, the level and quality of service provided by a consolidated dispatch center should exceed those currently being supplied.

The long road to recovery from the recession of 2007.
November 2009 update
Ned Hill, Dean of the Levin College at Cleveland State University, released his December update of macroeconomics conditions. This data-rich presentation covers the latest economic forecasts and the fiscal condition of the federal government. The presentation deck covers the performance of the following markets: currency, trade, labor, housing, commercial property, and auto. It also reports on the most current data on consumer sentiment and the investment sentiment of multinational CFOs.

Does a Mayor Make a Difference in a City’s Economic Performance?
The case of Akron, Ohio
, May 6, 2009. Ned Hill.
Can a mayor make a difference in a city’s long-term economic performance? Mayors have been observed making a difference in case studies and in press accounts but it is nearly impossible to link the economic performance of a particular city to the actions of a specific mayor. Terms are frequently too short and cause and effect cannot be disentangled. The term of Akron’s Mayor Donald Plusquellic offers an opportunity to make the connection. The mayor’s length of service is long, data are available, and comparable cities and metropolitan areas exist to act as informal controls for other structural explanations for the observed outcome. It is observed that the number of jobs held by Akron’s residents grew from 1990 to 2007. This fact is compared to 29 other large central cities. Only eight of the 29 comparable cities experienced growth; Columbus being the only other city on Ohio. This paper examines the ways in which the city of Akron, under Plusquellic’s leadership affected the city’s economic performance.

Responding to Foreclosures in Cuyahoga County: Program Year Three Evaluation Report, March 1, 2008 through February 28, 2009, 2009. Kathryn W. Hexter, Molly Schnoke.
Cuyahoga County, Ohio is at the epicenter of the foreclosure crisis. With close to 13,000 foreclosure filings a year since 2005, more than 10,000 vacant and derelict structures and thousands of homeowners losing their homes, the effects of the crisis will be long lasting and far reaching.

In Ohio, County courts, agencies and departments have some level of authority and responsibility for virtually every step of the foreclosure process. So it is not surprising that the fifteen mayors of the First Suburbs Consortium2 turned to Cuyahoga County to help them address this crisis. In response, in August 2005, the Cuyahoga County Commissioners launched a broad Foreclosure Initiative with two potentially conflicting goals: making foreclosure proceedings faster and fairer to aid municipalities struggling with properties “in limbo” as a result of being stuck in the foreclosure pipeline and preventing foreclosures to aid residents who wanted to keep their homes. Since that time the Initiative has made measurable progress on both fronts. Understanding the successes and barriers of Cuyahoga County’s Initiative holds lessons for other cities and counties facing what may well be one of the most challenging urban issues of the Century.

2008 Northeast Ohio Barometer of Economic Attitudes, 2008. Kathryn Hexter, Molly Schnoke and John Brennan.
The primary goal of the Northeast Ohio Barometer of Economic Attitudes (NEO Barometer) is to provide meaningful information about what the public knows and perceives about the region. The Barometer is designed to provide a reliable and objective opinion-gauge of the people in Northeast Ohio. Since 2004, it has been tracking the public’s perception of the region’s general economic development progress, as well as opinions on regionalism and economic development initiatives. The 2008 survey added a new section that begins to track public perceptions about the importance of education, to inform strategies for addressing the persistently low levels of educational attainment of northeast Ohio residents.

A Scan of Attributes in County Government Structure, 2008. The Urban Center.
This report discusses the outcome of a national scan of models of effective county leadership and operations that might translate into alternative structures for consideration by the Commission on Cuyahoga County Government Reform. The scan produced a number of alternate county organizational structures that utilized several formats for executive, legislative, and administrative roles.

The Likely Impact of Mandated Paid Sick and Family-Care Leave on the Economy and Economic Development Prospects of the State of Ohio, 2008. The Urban Center.
The Urban Center of the Maxine Goodman Levin College of Urban Affairs of Cleveland State University was engaged by Ohioans to Protect Jobs, a nonprofit group organized under Section 501(c)(4) of the Internal Revenue Code, to analyze a proposal that all employers in Ohio employing 25 or more people provide seven paid sick and family-leave days for all employees working 30 hours or more. The proposal also required that part-time employees be provided similar benefits on a pro rata basis. This report details the findings and conclusions of the Urban Center research team.

Regional Dashboard of Economic Indicators 2008: Comparative Performance of Midwest and Northeast Ohio Metropolitan Areas, September 2008. Ziona Austrian, Afia Yamoah and Iryna Lendel.
This report describes the findings from the third study of Dashboard indicators using the framework that was developed in the previous two studies. The framework resulted in a set of indicators that explains the dynamics of regional economic growth for large and mid-sized metropolitan areas in the United States. The objective of this study is to continue monitoring the performance of Northeast Ohio metropolitan areas over time and in comparison to other metropolitan areas across the United States.

Northeast Ohio Economic Brief, April 2008. Jill Taylor.
This brief is the fourth release in a series that provides a broad overview of employment and wage trends for Northeast Ohio. It updates earlier editions with data for the first quarter of 2007. It is intended to provide a quick, current, and informative snapshot of the regional economy.

Northeast Ohio Manufacturing Brief, November 2007. Afia Yamoah.
This brief continues a series of publications on trends in Northeast Ohio manufacturing industries. It aims to provide a quick, current, and informative report on trends in employment, wages, and output for major manufacturing industries.

Responding to Foreclosures in Cuyahoga County: An Assessment of Progress, November 2006. Alan C. Weinstein, Kathryn Wertheim Hexter and Molly Schnoke
In August 2006, Cleveland State University was asked to conduct an initial assessment of the Cuyahoga County Commissioners' Report and Recommendations on Foreclosure that would assist the county in planning for future phases of the project. This report presents the findings of this initial assessment of the first 18 months of the initiative. It documents the process undertaken by the county, assesses the progress made toward reaching goals, identifies successes and concerns, and offers some preliminary recommendations about program operations. It also offers suggestions for a more formal evaluation process going forward.

A Review of Tax Expenditure Limitations and Their Impact on State and Local Government in Ohio, 2006. Edward W. Hill, Ph.D., Matthew Sattler, Jacob Duritsky, Kevin O’Brien and Claudette Robey
This report examines the history of Tax Expenditure Limitations (TELs) across the United States, from their infancy in the mid-1970s through their current incarnation. Various TELs are reviewed, the forces behind their creation are discussed, and three case studies of the performance of TELs are presented, examining their structures and outcomes. The final section of the paper focuses on the history of tax limitation efforts in Ohio. This is followed by a description of the Ohio TEL proposal and the initial reaction to that proposal.

Strategy for the Implementation of an Industrial Land Bank, September 2005. Great Lakes Environmental Finance Center.
The City of Cleveland plans to create a long-term vision for industrial and commercial land reuse in order to better serve the business and neighborhood interests of its citizens. The implementation of an industrial land bank is one critical way in which to fulfill this goal. This study aimed to develop a strategy to aid the city in the operation and management of rehabilitating commercial and industrial properties for reuse. The objectives of the project were to:

  • Incorporate a strategy understood by senior managers at the city that identifies a broad economic redevelopment vision, especially for brownfields.
  • Include in the plan strategies for financing the acquisition and/or transfer of properties into the land bank.
  • Establish elements in the plan to include both short- and long-term implementation.

Best Practices in Land Bank Operation, June 2005. Great Lakes Environmental Finance Center.
In preparation for the development of a strategic business plan for the City of Cleveland to create an industrial/commercial land bank, the GLFEC conducted a best practices scan that encompassed two phases of primary research. The first phase included a thorough review of more than 41 sources of academic and trade literature on the topics of vacant land utilization and management, land banking, land assembly, and vacant and abandoned property policy. The second phase was a survey of 34 land banks and land redevelopment authorities in the United States. This report summarizes the findings of the research and identifies those practices in land-bank operation in the United States that currently define the models of operation and point to the best policies and practices in use today.

A Report to the Urban League of Greater Cleveland: An Assessment of Business Support Services Available to Existing and Start-up Small Businesses in the City of Cleveland, June 2005. Stuart Mendel.
This report’s objective is to help leadership organizations and policymakers look for ways to adapt their program initiatives to address the concentration of poverty in the city of Cleveland through small business development. A number of recommendations have been offered throughout this report that focus on providing support and technical assistance to small businesses, which comprise the overwhelming majority of enterprises in the region.

Industry-Based Competitive Strategies for Ohio: Managing Three Portfolios, May 2005. Deloitte Consulting, LLP, Cleveland State University, OSA Strategy.
Political and business leaders have recognized a need to chart a new economic course for Ohio’s future. This study represents a step toward determining effective uses for limited development dollars in the state and filling in Ohio’s economic development strategy. This statewide industry study has been designed to provide economic development officials with insight, analysis, and strategic tools to help businesses compete more efficiently in an increasingly global marketplace.

America's Central Cities, Jobs and Economic Development: Presentation to U.S. Conference of Mayors, Akron, Ohio, 2004. Edward W. Hill.
This presentation details the seven rules for economic development in cities. It warns of adopting simple, packaged solutions to tackle the complex problems and opportunities cities face. The presentation closes with a discussion on the geography of competition and the realities of the global marketplace.

Innovation in Economic Development, Ohio MEMS Association 2004 Economic Summit: The Business Case, 2004. Edward W. Hill, Patrick Gammons.
This presentation outlines the seven principles of economic development and ways to think about innovation in the regional economy. It stresses the need to innovate as a product’s market power and earnings diminish along the product life cycle. The presentation closes with a discussion of the components of a successful regional innovation portfolio.

Manufacturing Pennsylvania’s Future: Regional Strategies that Build from Current Strengths and Address Competitive Challenges, January 2004. Deloitte Consulting, LLP, Cleveland State University, Jack Russell Associates, Inc.
Executive Summary
This study documents the role of manufacturing in Pennsylvania and analyzes the forces shaping the future of the industry. (Team PA Foundation, March 2004). Four goals drove the study: 1) Document the past and present importance of manufacturing to the Pennsylvania economy, 2) analyze the forces that will shape the possible futures of manufacturing in the state, 3) assess the economic impact and return on investment of the Industrial Resources Centers, and 4) identify actions to help achieve a dynamic and prosperous future for manufacturing.

Slanted Pavement: How Ohio's Highway Spending Shortchanges Cities and Suburbs, March 2003.
Billie K. Geyer, Kevin E. O'Brien, Claudette Robey, and John Brennan.
This paper examines the geographic pattern of state transportation spending in Ohio between 1980 and 1998. In particular, it examines the spatial patterns, the location of state transportation finance and spending—including current highway contracts, gas tax collections, and vehicle registration tax revenues—and compares them to indicators of transportation demand and need.

In doing so, the paper seeks to decipher one state’s confusing system of highway finance to determine whether transportation dollars are being spent in ways that meet the myriad challenges—aging infrastructure, traffic congestion, and decentralizing economic development—faced by metropolitan areas. In addition, the paper also seeks—since Ohio’s system of transportation finance resembles that of many states—to throw light on spending patterns within numerous states.

Ohio’s Competitive Advantage: Manufacturing Productivity, 2001. Edward W. Hill.
The underlying theme of Dr. Hill’s book is that manufacturing is the connective tissue of the state’s economy. This is true in two ways: The first is in terms of the distribution of employment, and the second connection is in locations of different parts of the manufacturing production process. The key to increasing incomes in all parts of Ohio is to ensure that the products made in manufacturing production platforms remain competitive, which means vigorously pursuing public policies that enhance productivity—investing in both labor and capital.

Manufacturing in Ohio: World-class and Underappreciated by All But the Market. Edward W. Hill.
This presentation explores the role of technology in the economy – its impact on production and on incomes in Ohio. It asks the question, “What does high tech really mean?” and asserts that manufacturing is an industry with increasing demand for technologically specialized labor.

Navigating Relationships: Power, Money and Talk in Grantmaker-Grantseeker Interactions, 2008. Todd Lloyd, Susan Friemark and Jessica Sowa.
This project was initiated in response to a study that showed that nonprofit executive directors were leaving the profession because relationships with funders increased the stress of fundraising (Daring to Lead, 2006). The initiative involved two components: an exploratory survey to both grant-making foundations and grant-seeking nonprofits in Greater Cleveland to gain insight into how both groups viewed their relationship and effectiveness in addressing community problems. The results from these surveys provided information to structure discussions at a series of workshops conducted between April 2007 and November 2007. The recommendations included in the report are gleaned from the insights of the workshop participants. They are meant to help funders and grantees alike better navigate their often complex interactions and increase the overall impact of their work together.

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