We long ago stopped having to make everything we need: forging tools, handcrafting shoes from hides and weaving textiles for clothing. The expansion of global trade is affording us the opportunity to rediscover and reinvent the art of “making” itself, which could in turn profoundly impact what we make and what we trade.
An architect’s style and skill doesn’t always win the day when competing in overseas markets for services. Some trade policies are like scaffolding protecting local professionals, but some trade rules offer support beams that enable global talent to build the vibrant cityscapes of today and tomorrow.
Cambridge is a major hub in Massachusetts’ life sciences ecosystem. What makes up the DNA of vibrant biopharma and medical device industries? Trade associations, overseas governments and investors, and U.S. government agencies at the federal, state, and local levels are all part of the prescription for economic growth.
Frida Kahlo helped make Mexican folk art famous. The artisan sector is now the second-largest employer in the developing world after agriculture, worth over $32 billion every year. International trade in artisan goods more than doubled between 2002 and 2012. Growing numbers of foundations, corporations, and banks view the artisan entrepreneur arena as an investable sector.
Ethnic neighborhoods across the United States – from Little Havana in Miami to San Francisco’s Chinatown – allow us to experience elements of a culture and cuisine without needing to break out a passport. Read about how trade brings the best of Italy’s food to residents and tourists in Boston’s North End.
A community’s store of “social capital” can determine how well it rebounds from adversity.
Since its creation in 1990, the U.S. H-1B visa program has enabled American employers to hire highly-skilled foreign workers when native-born talent is in short supply. As many as 1 in 4 physicians in the United States are foreign-trained and they are much more likely than their American counterparts to serve in areas with higher poverty and lower educational levels.
The operations of majority-owned U.S. affiliates added $869.1 billion to the U.S. economy in 2014 and employed 6.4 million American workers. They are heavy traders as well, accounting for an astounding 26 percent of total U.S. exports of goods in 2013, and 30.3 percent of imports of goods.
The secret to the success of Michele’s Granola is more than a great product. Also instrumental was a little-known, decades-old government initiative – the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) program – aimed at helping small and medium-sized manufacturers grow.
If you were to take a guess as to which American metropolitan areas export the most, you’d probably be right: New York, Los Angeles, Houston, Chicago, Dallas, and Seattle top the list. But, if ranked by exports as a share of local GDP, it’s America’s smaller cities that top the list – four of the most export dependent are smaller cities in Indiana.