CNV Vol. 25 No.1
Dear Community News and Views subscribers. Please note our new Newsletter format. We welcome your feedback. Thank you for your continued interest in our work.

Winter, 2015 - In This Issue:
MSU CCED Opens Flint Office
By: Bob Brown, Associate Director, MSU CCED,

On October 1, 2014 the MSU CCED increased its presence in Flint, Michigan, by establishing an office in the Oak Business Center (2712 N. Saginaw Street). Conveniently located just north of downtown Flint, the Oak Business Center is a small business and entrepreneur incubator that offers high quality space for companies to conduct business. It accommodates more than a dozen offices, two conference rooms, a kitchen, and a work center. 


Learn more about the new CCED space here.

CCED and SPDC Faculty Lead Honors College Seminar Focused on Property Abandonment
By: George Berghorn, Ph.D.,  Post-doctoral Research Assistant,

You do not have to drive very far across Michigan, other Midwestern states, or many post-urban parts of the United States before you begin to realize the troublesome scope of private property abandonment. Hulking shopping malls, factories, commercial storefronts, and homes sit vacant in communities in every corner of the country. The process to redevelop these properties can be lengthy and costly, and the costs of demolition and redevelopment often fall to local taxpayers. Michigan State University researchers at the Center for Community and Economic Development (CCED) have been studying ways to stop the cycle of private property abandonment. Early efforts focused on the role of insurance and bonding to ensure that funds are available to demolish or deconstruct structures at the end of their usable lives. The scope of the research team's work has expanded to include the role of community benefit agreements and other innovative planning tools to help eliminate future abandonment of newly constructed properties; this research has also demanded that attention be given to the implications for construction management if public policies begin to encourage private owners to be responsible for demolition or deconstruction of abandoned buildings.


Click here to learn more.

Cuba Historian Serves as REI Innovate Michigan Summit Keynote
By: Alyeen Robainas Barcia, Office of the City Historian, Havana, Cuba

Ms. Barcia was the keynote speaker at the Third Annual REI Innovate Michigan Summit held on September 4, 2014, on the campus of Michigan State University. Ms. Barcia offered participants a rare look at economic development in Cuba and historic preservation in Havana. She was kind enough to offer the following reflections of her visit to the United States 


 Click here to read about her experience in Michigan.
Contemporary Issues Institute 2015: Cultivating a Civil Society in an Era of Incivility
By Chelsea Austin, Research Assistant,

The MSU Center for Community and Economic Development's Contemporary Issues Institute identifies critical emerging issues in community and economic development. The institute, with the support of a broad-based advisory committee, seeks to learn more about an emerging issue in community and economic development and facilitate networking with key stakeholders that may lead to future research and outreach collaboration in the emerging topical area.


Our 2015 topic is on "Cultivating a Civil Society in an Era of Incivility." This year's Institute will be held on Friday, March 6, 2015, at the Michigan Capitol Building from 8:30 a.m. - 12:30 p.m.


For more information on this year's Contemporary Issues Institute, read the MSU CCED Newsletter article or visit the MSU CCED Website.

 Click here to register for this free event.


Binational Regional Innovation and Collaboration Team Targets Lasting Impact with Two Binational Agreements
By: Tony Orlando, 

Tony Orlando, Research Assistant,

MOU Signing (left to right):

Paul Brake, Chair of the I-69 International Trade Corridor NMDC and City Manager for the City of Grand Blanc

Ben Erulker, Vice President of Economic Development for the Detroit Regional Chamber

John Grace, Vice Chair of SWEA and Deputy Mayor of Goderich

Peter White, Western University (back left)

J.D Snyder, Michigan State University CCED (back right)

Binational Regional Innovation and Collaboration Team Targets Lasting Impact with Two Binational Agreements

The MSU CCED's Binational Regional Innovation and Collaboration team facilitated two innovative and impactful binational agreements this year that target economic development through binational regional collaboration. The project team, led by CCED Project Director J. D. Snyder, assumed the lead role in organizing, rationalizing, and facilitating the agreements signed by key stakeholders in Michigan and southwest Ontario.


Click here to learn more about these agreements.

Regional Economic Innovation Update
By: Conor Ott, Graduated Research Assistant
Innovate Michigan! Summit 2014

On September 4th of this year, the MSU University Center for Regional Economic Innovation (REI) network came together for the annual Innovate Michigan! Summit. This was a chance for economic developers, planners, local government professionals, and more to collaborate to create, learn, and share about current trends and innovative practices being done across Michigan in the field of economic development. Of the 160 or so folks in attendance, 35% were economic development practitioners, 14% were university faculty or staff, and 10% were entrepreneurial/business development professionals. A video of the conference can be seen here.


Click here for more REI updates.

Great Lakes Regional Training Initiative
By: Amy Carr, Research Assistant,

The EDA University Centers in the Chicago Region recently initiated the Great Lakes Regional Training Initiative (GLRTI) to assist regions in the six states of Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, and Wisconsin by promoting technical and training assistance needs. GLRTI makes valuable university resources available and provides training programs to economic development professionals in all six states.

GLRTI is in the process of developing a training program that addresses the needs of economic development professionals in the region. To accomplish this, gaps between currently available training and the needs of practitioners must be identified. Please take GLRTI's brief survey (5-10 minutes) by clicking here, to assist in identifying training needs and to lend your voice to shaping this new regional initiative.  


URPSA's Grand River Student Connection Provides Internships for MSU Students


Mengqiu (Liria) Wu, Research Assistant,

In March 2013, MSU's Urban and Regional Planning Student Association (URPSA) received a grant from the Community Reinvestment Fund, established as part of the Mid-Michigan Program for Greater Sustainability. This grant was provided to the Tri-County Regional Planning Commission from the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Sustainable Communities Program.

Learn more about the URPSA project here.


Food Product Innovation Center

John Melcher, Associate Director, MSU CCED,

The MSU Center for Community and Economic Development assisted in the development of a $5.3 million proposal for the creation of the Food Product Innovation Center (FPIC). The successful funding package for the FPIC was announced this fall which included $2.7 million from the U.S. Department of Commerce, $1 million from the State of Michigan, and $1.6 million from the College of Agriculture at Michigan State University.


Click here to learn more about the facility.


MSU Center for Community and Economic Development
1615 E. Michigan Ave.
Lansing, MI 48912

MSU is an affirmative-action, equal-opportunity employer