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FROM SITE SELECTION MAGAZINE, July 2022 ISSUE
From the May Issue

TALENT ATTRACTION & RETENTION

Here’s Who Decides What Quality of Life Means

Attracting talent means tuning in to what millennials and Gen Z have to say.

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From the September Issue

INVESTMENT PROFILE: ABILENE, TEXAS

Career Program Finds Tomorrow’s Workforce Today

NEXTU, a career empowerment program supporting high school students seeking careers in STEM and technical fields, is helping Abilene create “a great pipeline of qualified candidates” for area employers.

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 CONWAY DATA SNAPSHOT 
When not engaged in your work as a digital nomad, you’re free to wander around Seattle’s famous Pike Place Market.
Archive photo courtesy of Puget Sound Regional Council

Using HighSpeedInternet.com’s list of the top 100 U.S. metros with the fastest internet speeds as their starting point, connected home services and products review organization Reviews.org has released its list of “Best U.S. Cities for Digital Nomads.” Seattle, Washington, tops the list, followed by Portland, Oregon; Chicago; Atlanta; and San Jose. Other factors include proximity to airports and national parks, number of state recreation areas, average Airbnb cost, number of free wifi hotspots, average download speed and average annual temperature — though the decision to award more points for higher average temperature might be questioned by some who are experiencing the nation’s heat wave. What’s in Seattle’s favor? Among other things, “Seattle has the most free public hotspots,” said the organization. “For another, it’s big on coffee (a must-have for many remote workers),” though the number of coffee shops and brewpubs was not part of the ranking matrix.

While the rankings did not look at state results, we will: California leads the way with seven cities on the list, including No. 7 San Francisco, No. 13 Sacramento and No. 16 Los Angeles. Florida and Ohio host six digital nomad hot spots each, including No. 25 Cleveland and No. 27 Miami. North Carolina, New York, Pennsylvania and Texas have five each, including No. 8 New York City, No. 9 Philadelphia, No. 12 Dallas and No. 14 Charlotte.

Where to go globally if you’re a digital wanderer? As we reported in April, Nomad List is the place to find out. Keeps track of the fastest growing remote work hubs. The fastest growing remote work hubs this year are led by Buenos Aires, Argentina; Bangkok, Thailand; and Canggu, Bali, Indonesia, followed by four more Thailand locations in the top 10. Notable at No. 7 was the only European destination in the top 10: Edinburgh, Scotland, site of the 2022 World Forum for Foreign Direct Investment. The fastest growing remote work hubs with consistent growth in check-ins over the past five years (through 2021, before Russia’s attack on Ukraine) were led by Belgrade, Serbia; Kyiv, Ukraine; Tbilisi, Georgia; Playa del Carmen, Mexico; and Lisbon, Portugal. — Adam Bruns

 

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2022 MISSISSIPPI DEVELOPMENT GUIDE

DISTRIBUTION & WAREHOUSING

A Massive New Project from Walmart Lands in Mississippi

The company’s first fulfillment center in the state is just one indicator of Mississippi’s attractiveness for e-commerce and logistics operations.

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 PROJECT WATCH 

California

Japan-based microcontroller company Renesas is taking its focus on workplace to new heights. In addition to announcing this week a company-wide day off called “Renesas Day” on August 12, and the implementation of “Focus Fridays” completely free of meetings on Fridays in August, the company is planning a 2,000-job expansion at its 16-acre Silicon Valley campus in San Jose. While the corporation has not issued an official announcement, multiple news sources report that Renesas is making the move on the heels of multiple acquisitions in the semiconductor arena. “The Bay Area is one of the most important centers for advanced high-level talent,” Renesas CEO Hidetoshi Shibata told reporter George Avolos of the Bay Area News Group.

Source: Conway Projects Report

Sri Lanka

Diamond Cutters Ltd, formed in 1987 with 80 individuals, has grown to become the largest supplier of diamonds to the luxury watch industry in Switzerland. “The company has been contributing immensely towards the national economy of Sri Lanka by earning foreign exchange for the past 33 years deploying a work force of 1,300 in two manufacturing facilities in Sri Lanka,” said an announcement in June. “It’s with great pleasure to announce that Diamond Cutters Ltd has taken initiatives to expand its production capacity in the near future by acquiring a new property based in Panadura. The new project will create and fulfill the job opportunities for 1,500 youths in Sri Lanka.” company signed an agreement with the Board of Investments of Sri Lanka in Colombo on June 24. Panadura is located on the Indian Ocean coast just south of Colombo.

Source: Conway Projects Report

 

 

 SITE SELECTION RECOMMENDS 

Like the water at the Stadium Swim facility at Circa Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada’s economic development practices are as transparent as possible.

Photo courtesy of Las Vegas Convention and Visitors Authority

Founded in 1998, Good Jobs First’s mission of holding governments and corporations accountable when it comes to economic development subsidies has continued to expand via a number of specialized databases and reports. Now the organization has redesigned its website, including the insertion of a paywall for those wishing to download records from its Violation Tracker and Subsidy Tracker databases. Among its most recent reports is “Financial Exposure: Rating the States on Economic Development Transparency,” released in April. No. 1 Nevada, Connecticut and Illinois ranked best, but even Nevada’s grade would be a “D” on a report card, Good Jobs First noted. “States began disclosing subsidy awards online in 1999,” said Kasia Tarczynska, senior research analyst and lead author of the study. “Yet almost half the states failed to score even 20 points out of 100 on our 2022 report card. The states know how, but some still lack the will to be transparent.”

 

 PHOTO OF THE DAY 
Photo by Navy Petty Officer 3rd Christina Himes, courtesy of the U.S. Navy and DVIDS

Sailors prepare to connect a fuel hose during a replenishment aboard the USS Essex during Rim of the Pacific (Rimpac), the world's largest international maritime exercise, in the Pacific Ocean, July 15, 2022. This year’s exercise in and around Hawaii and Southern California involved more than 25,000 personnel from 26 nations devoted to promoting and protecting a free and open Indo-Pacific. The biennial exercise, first held in 1971, this year involved 38 surface ships, more than 170 aircraft, four submarines and more than 30 unmanned systems.

 
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