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The Metropolitan Revolution

The United States must remake its economy if it is to achieve sustainable prosperity in a world that continues to transform at a dizzying pace. Americans must move from an economy driven by domestic consumption, debt, and financial engineering to one that is driven by exports, powered by cleaner energy, fueled by innovation, and rich in opportunity. Movement toward such an economy, in the view of Bruce Katz and Jennifer Bradley, must be led by metropolitan areas. The Metropolitan Moment details the importance of specific attributes to America's next economy, with a chapter devoted to each. For example, as wealth increases in nations such as China, India, and Brazil, greater U.S. emphasis on exports would capitalize on rising global demand. Aggressive investment in, and movement toward, a low-carbon economy will present new opportunities for the energy sector and the industries that feed it, as well as improving the health and quality of life for residents. Greater innovation in other areas as well must be pursued, supported, and sustained if we hope to see real growth in the long term. Taken together, these developments will help increase economic opportunity for all, reversing the long trend of increased inequality that can dispirit and even destabilize a society. The final section explores the unfortunate disjunction between the economic power of metropolitan areas and their legal powerlessness. Despite their obvious importance, they technically do not even exist in state law. Katz and Bradley explain how states can help build the foundation of the new economy, and a big part of that is adequately supporting their metropolitan economic engines. They also explain the federal government's role in this transformation-what it can do to help, and what it should not do. Katz and Bradley call for a view of the United States based on reality, not nostalgia. The real America is not the romantic small-town version of days gone by. Rather, it is a complicated, multi-ethnic, globally connected metropolitan America that will power its citizens through the 21st century. The sooner America realizes what it really is, the sooner it can begin rebuilding itself.
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About the Author

Bruce J. Katz is a vice president at the Brookings Institution and founding director of the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program.Jennifer Bradley is a fellow at the Brookings Metropolitan Policy Program. She has written for The New Republic, the Atlantic Monthly, Democracy, and The American Prospect.


" The Metropolitan Revolution upends conventional wisdom and makes the case for how our cities and metros are leading American change and progress: they are transforming our national economy, political conversation, and collective destiny from the bottom up like never before. A must-read for anyone working toward a brighter future for our cities and our nation." --Mayor Cory Booker " The Metropolitan Revolution builds on twenty years of studying metropolitan areas and hundreds of thousands of miles traveling to them around the globe, and the result is an exciting guide to the new world economy - urban, networked, innovative, collaborative, and driven by human potential." --Secretary of Housing and Urban Development Henry G. Cisneros "Being mayor of Chicago is the best job I've ever had in public life. Katz and Bradley totally get it: the real power to change America lies in our cities and metros." --Mayor Rahm Emanuel "With paralysis in Washington, public policy solutions will come from successful metropolitan regions, the clinical trials of our future. We are well into this journey, but never has it been explained with such insight and analysis until The Metropolitan Revolution." --Governor Jon Huntsman "Just when 'by the people, for the people' seems like an anachronism, cities are giving it new meaning, fueled by twenty-first century technology. Every citizen needs to understand the metropolitan revolution. If we change cities, we change the country." --Jennifer Pahlka, Founder and Executive Director, Code for America "This book captures the energy and excitement bubbling up in cities across America. This is 'do it yourself' urbanism of the highest order, and it is altering our landscape and our country." --Janette Sadik-Khan, Commissioner, New York City Department of Transportation "Through real-world examples, The Metropolitan Revolution brings to life how America's cities and suburbs drive innovation to solve problems and seize opportunities. This book is a call to action beyond Washington, where metro leaders join together and simply get stuff done." --Mayor Scott Smith " The Metropolitan Revolution is compelling reading on how our federal system is a powerful advantage in global competitiveness. This book is indispensable for business and elected leaders on realizing the economic potential of metropolitan areas for their citizens and the country." --Treasury Secretary Robert E. Rubin "Devolving power to cities and metropolitan areas is a development that we rightly ought to celebrate, as Bradley and Katz do." --Ike Brannon, CATO Institute, Regulation

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