|Cities Must Meet New Century With Flexibility|
Challenges confronting cities in the next century will be unlike those faced at any time in the past. The latest issue of Cityscape calls for cities to implement pragmatic policies to benefit from social, economic, and technological changes that will offer opportunities to become more globally competitive.
Together, the articles in this issue express a common theme: Cities must seek innovative, creative solutions to problems caused by rapid changes in their environment. To be successful, cities must adapt to the information age by mobilizing resources in a highly competitive economic environment.
The first article frames this issue with a list of truths about U.S. cities that suffer from income inequality, high concentrations of poverty and joblessness, and a lack of affordable housing. The next article then suggests that industrial transformation and the lack of human capital cause urban poverty, which is exacerbated by a spatial mismatch of jobs between cities and suburbs and entrenched patterns of discrimination.
Next, Cityscape turns to concerns for the future exploring how technological change is likely to affect urban areas. One author discusses the difficulty cities may encounter in adapting to the information economy. Another author suggests that telecommuting and the Internet may be keys to pooling human resources through community networks.
Other authors discuss the establishment of a labor pool of skilled, educated, flexible workers who can respond rapidly to changes in international markets. Government policy must focus on programs such as small business development, technology transfer, technology assistance, and local business retention and expansion. The impact of immigration on urban labor markets is also examined.
Cityscape also includes a consideration of appropriate urban policy. Authors discover that cities and suburbs do not create independent labor markets, they share a common economic fate. As a consequence, Federal policy should focus on comprehensive approaches to solving economic and social problems.
Cityscape closes with an article about complementing existing housing assistance programs by balancing place-based aid and people-based aid.
Cityscape 3, 3 is available from HUD USER for $5. Please use the order form to obtain copies.