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Nov 2 [press release] -- The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA), in partnership with the Argonne National Laboratory, announces the launch of the Economic Development Capacity Index (EDCI), a web-based, publicly accessible dashboard designed to assist economic development practitioners in answering the question: “How did an individual community’s capacities change over time due to EDA support?”

“The debut of the Economic Development Capacity Index is the culmination of another successful collaboration between EDA and Argonne National Laboratory,” said Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Alejandra Y. Castillo. “Argonne data scientists, working with EDA economists and program staff, are setting a new standard for evidence-based, data-driven economic development.”

The new EDCI dashboard allows for a deeper data dive than existing tools by focusing on county-level information to reveal an area’s baseline of economic development readiness. More than 50 economic indicators are used to generate EDCI output to help determine a given region's economic development capacities compared to the rest of the nation. The launch of the EDCI dashboard follows the successful, January debut of the National Economic Resilience Data Explorer (NERDE), which provides access to data on economic distress, employment, GDP, clusters of industries, and ongoing COVID-19 impacts for counties and Economic Development Districts.

“Collectively, the EDCI and the NERDE bring together a broad range of data sources to help communities identify their economic development strengths and opportunities for growth,” said Iain Hyde, Director of Argonne’s National Preparedness Analytics Center. “Through this most recent collaborative effort, economic developers will have another powerful data-driven tool to inform local and regional planning, investments, and initiatives.”

EDA and Argonne will host a free, informational webinar to orient economic development practitioners to the EDCI tool and introduce potential users to its capabilities. The date and time of the webinar will be announced in the coming weeks at eda.gov/rnta. View more information about the Economic Development Capacity Index.

The development of the Economic Development Capacity Index was supported with a $1.5 million grant from EDA’s Research and National Technical Assistance (RNTA) program. EDA’s RNTA program funds research, evaluation, and technical assistance projects that promote competitiveness and innovation in distressed rural and urban regions throughout the United States and its territories. Learn about other RNTA projects at eda.gov/rnta.

EDCI: https://disgeoportal.egs.anl.gov/portal/apps/experiencebuilder/experience/?id=2f5c49623f354a8cbc95414784ca3e34  
NERDE: https://www.anl.gov/dis/national-economic-resilience-data-explorer-nerde
Press release: https://eda.gov/news/blogs/2022/11/02/argonne-national-laboratory.htm

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