America21 Helps Homewood in Pittsburgh
Photos by Mike Green
America21 traveled to the community of Homewood in Pittsburgh, PA to deliver a message of economic strategy and hope on March 14. Pittsburgh’s Urban Innovation21 invited America21 to speak to Homewood residents alongside urban renewal, education and business leaders.
We divided our presentations between the three co-founders, Chad, Mike and Johnathan.
America21 Envisions Prosperous Homewood
Johnathan introduced America21 and our visionary economic strategy of Inclusive Competitiveness, which is the bedrock foundation upon which urban innovation ecosystems can be built and connected to existing economic infrastructures within regional innovation clusters. Using a framework of pipeline to productivity America21 provided Homewood with a vision of economic opportunity that had never been introduced before.
Chad produced staggering data on STEM education-based economic development (science, technology, engineering and math), clearly illustrating the dramatic impact such focus had on equipping young adults to not only participate as qualified job seekers in the 21st century Innovation Economy, but also as job creators.
Mike piggybacked on the human talent pipeline Chad introduced by focusing on high-growth entrepreneurship and access to capital, as well as capital formation. Mike discussed solutions to the overwhelming poverty that fosters crime and other rampant problems within Homewood, which is characteristic of numerous economically disconnected urban sectors across the nation.
Johnathan summed up the vision America21 brought to Homewood with a focus on the individual and organizational leadership — Trim Tab practices — that are needed to make Inclusive Competitiveness a reality.
Interpreting Disparate Economic Ecosystems
Standing in the middle of Homewood, one can look up and see the bustling activity at the University of Pittsburgh high on the hill overlooking the devastation that pervades Homewood. Although located adjacent to one another, the difference in economic activity occurring within walking distance is dramatic. America21 asks a simple question: How can these two economic ecosystems be connected?
We offered some ideas. But we recognize the two ecosystems speak different economic languages. As an economic bilingual interpreter, America21 speaks both the language of the 21st century innovation economy and the language of 20th century left-behind communities. We offered our services as an intermediary organization working as a coach of the team formed and led by Urban Innovation21.
HOMEWOOD NATION DESCRIBES AMERICA21 VISIT
See Elwin Green‘s perspective on the America21 visit to Homewood in Homewood Nation.
America21 in Homewood: Photos
96% Black American residents
One of the most economically disconnected communities in America
Within walking distance of the University of Pittsburgh
Adjacent to economically vibrant communities
Extremely high violent crime rate
Extremely high vacant property rate
HOMEWOOD INSIGHT: Rachel Maddow visits Homewood with Pittsburgh Councilman Ricky Burgess (VIDEO)