Why Local Matters

In-Depth

Key Studies: Why Local Matters

Key Studies: Why Local Matters

Stacy Mitchell

January 8, 2016

A growing body of research is giving us new ways to quantify the harms of bigness and the benefits of local ownership. In this post, we round-up the important studies and provide the evidence that policymakers can use to craft better laws, business owners can use to rally support, and citizens can use to organize their communities.                READ MORE


Featured Articles

Why Small Businesses Matter for Workers

Why Small Businesses Matter for Workers

Stacy Mitchell

April 18, 2018

Small businesses are sometimes criticized as being bad for workers — but that idea is wrong. In this piece, we look at how small and large businesses compare on concrete metrics like wages, and find that in some industries, including retail, employees at small businesses earn more. There's also a larger way in which the interests of small businesses and working people are aligned, we argue: Both groups benefit when public policy works to disperse economic power.READ MORE


For Cities, Big-Box Stores Are Becoming Even More of a Terrible Deal

For Cities, Big-Box Stores Are Becoming Even More of a Terrible Deal

Olivia LaVecchia

June 16, 2015

Under what has become known as the "dark store" method, big-box retailers are declaring their busy stores to be functionally obsolescent and therefore nearly worthless for tax purposes —and they're winning big judgments for back taxes. It's the latest example of the way that, even as local governments continue to bend over backwards to attract big-box development, these stores are consistently a bad deal for communities.                READ MORE


The Do-It-Yourselves Downtown

The Do-It-Yourselves Downtown

Olivia LaVecchia

February 23, 2015

There's an emerging model that offers a glimpse of a new, better way for communities to generate economic development. It's called a real estate investment cooperative, and the benefits include new jobs in the neighborhood, local sources for key goods, a return on investment, and more — plus the opportunity for communities to do it themselves.                READ MORE


Locally owned businesses can help communities thrive — and survive climate change

Locally owned businesses can help communities thrive — and survive climate change

Stacy Mitchell

April 26, 2013

Cities where small, locally owned businesses account for a relatively large share of the economy have stronger social networks, more engaged citizens, and better success solving problems, according to several recently published studies.               READ MORE


Local Ownership Makes Communities Healthier, Wealthier and Wiser

Local Ownership Makes Communities Healthier, Wealthier and Wiser

Stacy Mitchell

July 18, 2012

Most policymakers don't imagine that their economic development decisions will affect such things as voter turnout or the prevalence of chronic disease. But a growing body of research is finding that scale and ownership of business matter in ways that extend far beyond economic outcomes.               READ MORE


Audio & Video

Why We Can’t Shop Our Way to a Better Economy: Stacy Mitchell’s TEDx Talk

Why We Can't Shop Our Way to a Better Economy: Stacy Mitchell's TEDx Talk

Stacy Mitchell

December 1, 2012

In this TEDx talk, Stacy Mitchell makes the case for a new phase in the local economy movement.               READ MORE


Watch: Stacy Mitchell Speaks on the New Localism

Watch: Stacy Mitchell Speaks on the New Localism

ILSR

March 4, 2016

ILSR's Stacy Mitchell spoke about policy to shape the next phase of the local economy movement in this presentation at the 2016 Winter Institute. The annual conference and educational event, hosted by the American Booksellers Association, was held in Denver on Jan. 25 and 26.               READ MORE


What Neighborhood Retail Gets Right (Episode 27)

What Neighborhood Retail Gets Right (Episode 27)

Nick Stumo-Langer

August 24, 2017

Gina Schaefer, the founder and owner of several local hardware stores in Washington, D.C., joins us to talk about starting and growing a neighborhood business and how her stores are faring in the age of Amazon.         READ MORE