MSU EDA University Center for

Regional Economic Innovation

E-Update | January 2023

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The CCED is excited to announce Co-Learning Plan authors, Dr. Louise Jezierski and Dr. Sejuti Das Gupta, as a part of MSU’s EDA University Center for Regional Economic Innovation 2023 cohort. Making Ends Meet: Women’s Work, the Care Sector and Regional Informal Economies: Detroit examines how women workers and employers navigate the informal care and personal service sectors of the Detroit metropolitan region, focusing on immigrant and adjacent neighborhoods. The 2020 COVID-19 pandemic-based economic crisis has impacted women with layoffs in service sector jobs or leaving to meet family care needs. Women engage the labor market informally through social networks and “brokerage institutions” including neighborhood institutions, e.g. temples, churches, and schools, to find work and household services. The research design employs mixed methodologies - archival data analysis and in-depth interviews - to map connective networks between formal and informal work that sustains a circular economy in greater Detroit. 

MSU’s EDA University Center for Regional Economic Innovation is happy to award Dr. John (Jake) Parcell for the Co-Learning Plan, Leveraging the Planning Process to Create a Model of Engagement for Communities in Need. Jake will focus this project year on leveraging the planning process to improve regional efforts in high percentage ALICE communities, as the process can be difficult due to a lack of capacity. This Co-Learning seeks to develop a model for organizations to use to make the planning process operate more effectively for communities who lack the technical and institutional capacity to achieve their greatest results. This will be accomplished through a rigorous review of best practices and a Delphi Study of volunteer officials from commissions to identify ways to improve the planning process.  

Congratulations to Dr. Mark Wilson on his Co-Learning Plan award, Opportunity or Betrayal?: The Promise and Perils of Electric Mobility. The project team includes Dr. Zeenat Kotval-Karamchandani and MSU Ph.D. student in Planning, Design & Construction, Shane Wilson. The growing adoption of electric vehicles (EVs) carries many potential benefits for sustainability and mobility, yet not all residents and communities may benefit equally. New technologies disrupt current systems and behaviors that may include uneven impacts on communities based on income, race, identity, and location. This proposal will examine the social implications of EVs for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed (ALICE) residents of Michigan, both at the state level and in urban/rural areas of concentration. In particular, the focus will be access to the benefits of EVs (mobility, employment) and experience of disadvantages such as environmental damage and health.

New Research Assistants!

Sean Farnum is a Junior at Michigan State University studying Social Relations and Policy at James Madison College (JMC) with minors in Political Economy and Economics. Sean recently joined CCED in January and is excited to learn more about sustainable development, nonprofit organization/finance, and equitable capital projects. Currently, he is a Research Assistant with the Institute for Public Policy and Social Research (IPPSR) and the Treasurer for the James Madison College Student Senate (JMCSS). In addition, he is conducting independent research for a first-generation homebuyer tax credit and hopes to create a policy proposal for his undergraduate thesis. Sean loves his three cats and is passionate about food, soccer, music, and trivia.

Rashane Thapa is a senior at Michigan State University pursuing a double major in Urban Planning and Human Geography. He is also minoring in Geographic Information Science (GIS) as well as Environment and Health. His interests in Planning include sustainable and efficient environmental planning, urban design and economic planning. Starting at the CCED in January of 2023, Rashane will be supporting Dr. Lamore and staff at the MSU Museum on a project exploring community preferences for a Domicology exhibit at the museum. At MSU, Rashane is also the Build Coordinator for the MSU Chapter Habitat for Humanity and is part of the French Club as well. Some of his hobbies include hiking, biking, playing the guitar and watching movies. Following graduation, Rashane plans to further his professional experience in Planning along with Geography/GIS before attending graduate school.
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