Providence Cluster Study
Providence is the capital city of Rhode Island and the third-largest city in New England. It is home to eight hospitals and seven institutions of higher learning including Brown University and the Rhode Island School of Design.
The City of Providence engaged Fourth Economy Consulting to help them create a cluster strategy to guide their economic development investments.
In order to identify the industry clusters on which the City of Providence should focus, our team conducted a series of quantitative and qualitative activities. These included:
Analyzing the industry clusters of firms located in the city
Analyzing the occupational and employment clusters of city residents
Reviewing the national and global trends in these clusters
Discussing the clusters with city and statewide stakeholders
Using stakeholder input to further analyze the clusters and identify sub-clusters
Developing recommended actions for each cluster
We used this process to develop recommended actions for clusters that can provide economic and employment opportunities. However, given the unique needs and opportunities of the City, our process veered from the traditional cluster study and also focused on some basic community and economic development needs (such as quality, affordable housing), as well as non-traditional industries such as educational technology and social enterprise. We also provided additional market analysis to support the development of an organic co-packing facility and other food-based initiatives which advanced into an Urban Food Strategy for the city. Our work informed Providence’s existing economic development strategy.
Economic Development Strategy