I attended the Greater MSP annual event hosted at the Ordway Theatre. The event was widely attended and featured several songs by the St. Paul Orchestra. A host of speakers shared updates on their initiatives throughout the evening. After the presentation, there was food and networking. The comments after the event were most interesting.
Some of the common post meeting viewpoints included:
- Seems like most of the initiatives are lead and implemented by corporate or 3rd party stakeholders and it is was unclear what value GMSP was adding.
- Given the vast number of sponsors and size of board, it is surprising to see such tactical initiatives in general that primary benefit only a few organizations.
- Now in its sixth year, GMSP is starting to work on an organizational strategy for themselves. Raises the question how much longer will they be funded?
- There is no vision or long-term plan for regional development anywhere much less near what competitive regions are doing around the world to aspire.
- Seems like industry needs to drive regional development more.
I thought the event was well executed and was surprised by the after event conversations from people who have been to many of the events or more involved in the initiatives. This was my first year attending, though I have been watching the organization for some time. Perhaps next years event will demonstrate a much more strategic approach to regional development or see a broader industry cluster start to drive economic development for the state as a whole.
See pictures of the event in the photo gallery