REGIONAL ECONOMIC DEVELOPMENT STRATEGY
If we are going to remove economic, educational, and social barriers so that everyone in our communities—from Anacostia to Georgetown and Oxon Hill to Arlington—can have equal access to opportunities, we must summon the region's collective assets to fundamentally reshape the physical, digital, economic, and social infrastructures that enable all communities to thrive, especially vulnerable and underserved populations.
Together, we're writing the blueprint for a brighter future for the DMV.
Our strategy is where regional economic development and social equity meet.
In July 2020, the COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force commissioned the development of a Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) and the associated metrics and measures required to tackle systemic challenges in the region by proposing the basis for an enduring regional model addressing economic renewal and social equity.
Since then, the Steering Committee—made up of 23 leaders from across the Washington area representing government, industry, academia, and the community—has convened multiple times to design the foundation for a sustainable collaboration to enable shared functions and joint actions to advance inclusive economic growth in the DMV.
An overarching theme in each discussion is the call to improve economic mobility and decrease stark regional inequities. Together, we're developing an enduring collaborative to build a stronger and more equitable Greater Washington. Explore more about what we'll achieve and the progress made to date, below.
Greater Washington is at a crossroads.
With a $540 billion burgeoning regional economy, Greater Washington is the 6th largest region in the United States. Its unique blend of abundant assets, resources, and job and educational opportunities makes the region simply unmatched. Home to more than 6 million people, it is a region anticipating more than one million new residents over the next 25 years.
While it is one of the most important metropolitan areas in the world, many benchmarks suggest that it is lagging behind other large metropolitan areas in growth, prosperity, and inclusion. Historically, our region’s development has been constrained by jurisdictional fragmentation, limited cross-sector coordination, and socioeconomic inequities. The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted both the inherently regional nature of our economy as well as stark socioeconomic divisions.
in racial inclusion
At its core, our strategy is an enduring regional model.
"A coordinated, cross-sector approach that diversifies our region’s economic base to achieve inclusive, equitable economic growth and resilience can help shape the DMV into the leading metropolitan area in the nation. Only by working together as one region will we be able to compete against other mega-regions of the world to attract and retain businesses, talented workers, innovators, and capital. And now, as the region recovers from the worst economic downturn in nearly a century, is the perfect time to craft a strategy that highlights the resources and assets of the entire region.”
— Victor Hoskins, President and CEO, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority
To establish an enduring regional alliance and culture that provide a cross-jurisdictional platform, with active industry, academia, and community participation, to enhance cooperation, communication, and collaboration for equitable economic development across Greater Washington
as established by the COVID-19 Strategic Renewal Task Force
Lay the groundwork for enduring regional economic development collaboration
Identify shared interests, complementary resources, and partnership opportunities
Explore joint actions across talent development, market strengthening and activation, regional branding and marketing, and innovation ecosystem development
Emphasize ways to address linkages between economic renewal and social equity
In March 2021, the REDS Steering Committee announced a set of core goals and guiding principles to align leaders across government, industry, academia, philanthropy, and community organizations. This marks the first time that leaders across public, private, academia, and civil society have come together to lay out economic development goals and guiding principles for the region.
Introducing the REDS 1.0 Report
The REDS 1.0 Report, “One: A Blueprint for Enduring Collaboration to Advance Economic Opportunity and Equity in Greater Washington,” lays the foundation for a long-term collaborative framework to improve the competitive advantage of the region both nationally and around the world by operationalizing an enduring cross-sector model made up of leaders from the public sector, industry, academia, community nonprofits and philanthropy working together to advance equitable economic development to improve opportunity for all. Further, it makes the case that the region can only solve structural regional problems that have been endemic constraints by coming together as a table of equal stakeholders across jurisdictions and sectors.
Fairfax County Economic Development Authority
DC Office of the Deputy Mayor for Planning and Economic Development
Prince George's County Economic Development Corporation
Montgomery County Economic Development Corporation
Alexandria Economic Development Partnership
Metropolitan Washington Council of Governments
Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority
U.S. Deptartment of Commerce (former)
*Liaison to Maryland National Capital Region Economic Development Alliance
**Liaison to Northern Virginia Economic Development Alliance
***Liaison to Planning Directors Technical Advisory Committee
Industry & Business
Board of Trade
The 2030 Group
****Liaison to Council of Economic Development Officials
Consortium of Universities of the Washington
Northern Virginia Community College
Dr. Anne Kress
The Stephen S. Fuller Institute, George Mason University
Community & Philanthropy
United Way of the National Capital Area
Washington Business Journal
Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation
What sets REDS apart is its regional cross-sector approach. The Steering Committee reflects this, and is made up of 23 leaders from across the Washington area. Their work marks the first time that leaders across public, private, academia, and civil society have come together to lay out economic development goals and guiding principles for the region.
George Thomas, Connected DMV
Alex Iams, Fairfax County Economic Development Authority