Urban, rural and regional policies

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    Florida is dissolving the Reedy Creek Improvement District, home of Disney World. What happens next is anyone’s guess.

Florida is dissolving the Reedy Creek Improvement District, home of Disney World. What happens next is anyone’s guess.

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Following criticism from the Disney company over a controversial education bill, last week Florida’s Governor, Ron DeSantis signed legislation which would dissolve the Reedy Creek Improvement District, the location of the company’s Disney World Resort. Chris Goodman explains the history of the special district, how it has functioned, and the uncertainty around what may happen next.

On April 22, Florida […]

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    Racially diverse neighborhoods in diverse areas are linked to lower crime rates

Racially diverse neighborhoods in diverse areas are linked to lower crime rates

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In new research, Young-An Kim and James C. Wo look at the implications of increasing racial and ethnic diversity in America’s communities on crime. Using evidence from Southern California, they tested the effects of racial diversity on neighborhood crime rates, finding that there were fewer violent and property crimes in neighborhood blocks which were more diverse, and especially those […]

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    Women city managers face a glass cliff as local governments are more likely to hire them when budgets are collapsing

Women city managers face a glass cliff as local governments are more likely to hire them when budgets are collapsing

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While women have become much more likely to obtain leadership positions in local governments since the 1970s, new research finds that they may be facing a glass cliff in municipal management. Using data from Florida local governments, Lang Kate Yang, Laura Connolly, and Jennifer M. Connolly write that women are more likely to be hired as municipal managers when […]

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    Michigan’s uneven and unequal approach to taking over municipal governments in financial distress is linked to local drinking water crises.

Michigan’s uneven and unequal approach to taking over municipal governments in financial distress is linked to local drinking water crises.

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From 2015 to 2019 the city of Flint, Michigan experienced a drinking water crisis which saw thousands of residents exposed to water-borne diseases and potential lead contamination. In new research, Sara Hughes and Anna Kopec examine the role of Michigan’s municipal takeover laws – which are intended to tackle local financial distress – in shaping water crises in Flint […]

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    For local governments, adopting more inclusionary practices is about preparation and action.

For local governments, adopting more inclusionary practices is about preparation and action.

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Why do some cities make intentional efforts to become more inclusive of their diverse populations while others do not? Using the food metaphor of a “roux”, Jonathan M. Fisk, Geoffrey A. Silvera, John C. Morris, Xi Chen, Xiaofeng Chen, Mac-Jane Crayton and Jan Hume write that without careful consideration by local governments, diverse constituencies may not be able to […]

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    Giving cities more autonomy over how they tax and spend does not lead to inflated budgets.

Giving cities more autonomy over how they tax and spend does not lead to inflated budgets.

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In the US, state governments are responsible for overseeing how much freedom local governments have in deciding their budgets. But do states need to put limits on local governments to stop them from spending in ways that are detrimental to their constituents? In new research which looks across all US cities, Mikhail Ivonchyk finds no relationship between autonomy and […]

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    Book Review: The Long Crisis: New York City and the Path to Neoliberalism by Benjamin Holtzman

Book Review: The Long Crisis: New York City and the Path to Neoliberalism by Benjamin Holtzman

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In The Long Crisis: New York City and the Path to Neoliberalism, Benjamin Holtzman makes an in-depth examination of the 50 year shift to neoliberal governance in America’s biggest city. Glyn Robbins writes that the book’s detailed and balanced discussion of how the city came to embrace private sector solutions to public policy problems is still relevant to today, […]

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    Negative social media sentiment from state and local officials could be bad for local government finances

Negative social media sentiment from state and local officials could be bad for local government finances

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Social media sentiment has become a powerful force across most aspects of society, and state and local government is no exception. In new research, Justin Marlowe tracks the social media output of state and local finance officials from 2014 to 2020, finding that their sentiment became more negative following the onset of the COVID-19 pandemic. He writes that these […]

How subprime lending emerged in minority neighbourhoods

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It is a commonly held belief that subprime lenders, who issue loans to risky borrowers, provide credit to high-risk communities that would not be able to get credit from low-risk lenders. Eglė Jakučionytė and Swapnil Singh challenge this view. They show that policy changes introduced in 1995 by US institutions Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac increased securitisation costs for lending […]

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    The tragedies of Twin Parks and Grenfell are reminders that housing has become a matter of life or death for millions.

The tragedies of Twin Parks and Grenfell are reminders that housing has become a matter of life or death for millions.

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On January 9th, 17 people lost their lives in a fire at the Twin Parks apartment block in the Bronx in New York City. Glyn Robbins draws parallels between this tragedy and the 2017 Grenfell Tower fire in London. He writes that policies of private sector provision of affordable housing on both sides of the Atlantic have failed – […]

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