The research uncovered a few key lessons on what makes certain cities more attractive than others. While a strong quality of life, talent pool and customer base were the most cited considerations, there was also a surprising lack of mention of business-friendly regulation as a factor. City leaders who dedicate resources to fostering these identifiable characteristics have the highest potential of drawing the types of innovative entrepreneurs, companies and jobs that can transform their local economies.
GSO seems like a contender based on these criteria. We've got some real QOL strengths and are working hard on that kind of stuff. Talent pool may be more of an issue, and we're part of a million+ metro region as defined in certain not-entirely-realistic ways.
So, maybe our whale-catching econ dev strategy should be supplemented by more nurturing of local growth companies and our own version of the Mittelstand.
With the prospect of more consolidation in the broadband market, places with competitive providers offering gigabit speeds or even an alternative to the cable/telco duopoly are looking better if Comcast manages to grab a larger market. Google’s plans to build out fiber-to-the-home networks in Kansas City and Austin, Texas, is one example, but even municipally owned networks or places with smaller providers such as Sonic.net may get a boost.