How the Reemergence of Manufacturing Can Benefit Historic Small Towns: A Mississippi Case Study

A Regional Land UseTransportation Decision Support Tool for MississippiWhen a new industry comes to town, the financial investment and revitalization that comes with it can be a boon to local economies and residents. But rural regions with deep roots in agriculture and manufacturing may encounter challenges in balancing the character and history of their communities with the development needs of new industry—especially if that new industry is high-tech. The people of Mississippi Hills National Heritage Area, where a new Toyota plant recently opened, face such a challenge.

In a report entitled A Regional Land Use-Transportation Decision Support Tool for Mississippi, Brian Morton, CURS Senior Research Associate and principal investigator of the study, outlines two starkly different development futures for the Mississippi Hills National Heritage Area. One projects rapid expansion of the towns of Tupelo and New Albany, both near the plant, which eclipse the region’s smaller towns. The second development pattern envisions more even growth among the regions larger towns: Houston, Pontotoc, New Albany, and Tupelo.

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Upcoming Seminar: How does financialization affect manufacturing investment?

financialization graphicProfessor Susan Christopherson, Cornell University

Please note: This talk has been cancelled.

We are very fortunate to have Cornell Professor Susan Christopherson visiting UNC on February 6 to discuss her research on how processes associated with the “financialization” of the US and UK economies affect capital investment in manufacturing enterprises.

Her talk will address the following questions: How does financialization affect manufacturing investment? Does it make economic sense to expect the growth of advanced manufacturing in what are considered “post-industrial” economies?  And what conditions work against the establishment of robust export-oriented manufacturing in the US and UK?

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Bullish on Durham: The Metamorphosis of RTP

Center for Urban & Regional Studies director Dr. William Rohe spoke about the history and future of the Research Triangle Park at the Durham County Library on August 26. The talk covered topics in his book The Research Triangle: From Tobacco Road to Global Prominence. This book, out in paperback, describes the history, current challenges, and future prospects of this fascinating metropolitan area. Find out more.

The Research Triangle: From Tobacco Road to Global Prominence available in paperback

cover of bookWritten by CURS Director, Bill Rohe, The Research Triangle: From Tobacco Road to Global Prominence describes the history, current challenges, and future prospects of this fascinating metropolitan area. Focusing on the personalities and perspectives of key actors in the development of the region, Rohe traces the emergence of the Research Triangle Park and its role in the region’s economic transformation. He also addresses some of the downsides of development, illustrating the strains that explosive population growth has placed on the region’s school systems, natural resources, transportation infrastructure, and social cohesion. Continue reading