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Training Course: Economic Development Strategic Planning

Date: June 14 - 15, 2018

Location: Baltimore, MD

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This course is held in partnership with Maryland Economic Development Association (MEDA).


This highly interactive course lets participants work in small teams to help understand the complexity of strategic planning and its challenges. Economic developers must build consensus among board members, stakeholders and the community as a whole, creating a unified vision for the future. Learn techniques to build consensus among stakeholders who represent different values and interests. Also, participants will learn the quantitative techniques used to better understand their community including: location quotients, shift share, input-output and cluster analyses. Explore project assessment methods for setting priorities and measuring your plan's impact.


Course Highlights:

• Stakeholder analysis, structuring participation, planning fundamentals
• Consensus building, group facilitation and conflict
• Defining geography, competitive advantage and SWOT
• Determining vision, mission, goals and objectives
• Demand-side strategies and supply-side strategies
• Identifying projects, strategy formation and implementation
• Setting realistic benchmarks and measuring success
• Exploring the use of dashboard indicators



June 14

8:30 - 9:00 am


9:00 - 10:00 am

Introduction to Planning
Why do communities become involved in economic development strategic planning efforts? This session will examine the benefits of developing an economic development plan and will provide an overview of the various stages in the strategic planning process. The session will also outline the goals and expectations for the course. Participants will be asked to share their experiences from strategic plans efforts they have participated in.

10:00 - 10:15 am

Short break

10:15 - 11:00 am

Organizing for ED Strategic Planning
One of the most important aspects of strategic planning is the pre-planning phase of the process. Practitioners need to know who the plan is serving and must organize a team that will work together to carry out the process. A great deal of leadership and team building is necessary and the planning team must establish a clear timeline for developing the plan. This session will discuss the values and cultures that the planning team must build upon or establish during formation. Building consensus among planning team members is a major component in the strategic planning process. The team that is put together must include many different stakeholders representing a number of values and interests. After the pre-planning phase, the practitioner must establish a sense of ownership and consensus among those participating in the planning process as well the general community.

11:00 am - Noon

Consensus Building/Stakeholder Ownership
In a recent examination of successful economic development efforts, consensus-building was highlighted as a key activity for moving the planning process forward. Stakeholders must have ownership of the plan, which means they should play large roles throughout the process. This session will examine various methods to engage stakeholders and keep them involved in the process. Although building consensus may take time, it is imperative if the process is to succeed.

Noon - 1:30 pm

Lunch on your own

1:30 - 2:30 pm

Vision, Mission, Goals and Strategies
By establishing a clear vision with an understandable mission statement, the team can develop goals in a more effective manner. This session will discuss this widely overlooked but extremely important phase of the planning process. Leadership involvement, organizing for accountability and starting the prioritization process of projects will be included.

2:30 - 2:45 pm

Short break

2:45 - 3:45 pm

Organizational Strategic Planning
Once a community's goals are established, it's important to look internally at the capacity of the economic development organization (EDO) to implement the plan. The EDO may need to adjust budget and staffing and/or identify additional resources to implement special projects. Learn how to put organizational processes and resources in place to meet plan goals.

3:45 - 4:30 pm

Case Study Review and Discussion


June 15

9:00 - 10:15 am

Analysis for ED Strategic Planning
The next two sessions cover how to both qualitatively and quantitatively evaluate your community. This session will introduce methods with which to do an economic base analysis, including location quotients, shift-share and specialization ratios. Input-output analysis and cluster analysis will also be discussed briefly. Once attendees have discussed the types of data to collect and the types of analysis that are applicable, how are the data used, interpreted and applied to the future needs of the community? The planning process will be influenced by the type of data that is collected and the conclusions made from that data.

10:15 - 10:30 am

Short break

10:30 am - 12:00 pm

Techniques for Assessing Economic Data
The strategic planning process requires a great deal of analysis to understand the forces at work in the community. This session will discuss how to gather information on the local community, including an economic assessment and an analysis of real and perceived strengths and weaknesses.

12:00 - 1:30 pm

Lunch on your own

1:30 - 2:30 pm

Strategic Project/Initiative Identification and Implementation
One key element to consider when creating an action plan is how to prioritize the projects that will help achieve the plan's goals. The process for prioritizing includes determining from where resources are coming and the benefits and outcomes for each project. This critical phase of the planning process identifies the major initiatives and programs that the overall plan will address. What is realistic given the community's constraints? What resources will be tapped for each project? How does the community decide which projects are realistic and feasible given the current situation, potential future situation and the given resources?

Additionally, economic development practitioners must build support for the programs and projects to be implemented. During the implementation stage, a number of political and competition issues may arise. The practitioner must address these issues in advance with by developing an implementation plan.

2:45 - 3:45 pm

Although listed as the final step to the planning process, the choice of benchmarks and ways in which to monitor the progress in the plan need to be considered throughout the process. At this stage, specific measurements must not only be set in place, but a process with which to measure those measurements must be solidified. This includes tapping into other resources and leveraging information that is already available in the community. This session will also look at how annual reports can be used as a tool to communicate progress toward plan goals.

3:45 - 4:30 pm

Dashboard Indicators Discussion
Dashboard Indicators are relatively new economic development tools that gauge the overall performance of a local or regional economy. This session will introduce course participants to Dashboard Indicators and discuss what specific metrics can be collected to gauge the community's economic development performance.

4:30 - 4:45 pm



* Agenda subject to change

**PLEASE NOTE: In order to receive full IEDC certification credit for this course and a certificate indicating course completion, participants must attend the entire course and stay through the final session on the last day. Please make travel plans accordingly.**



Jim Damicis
Senior Vice President
Camoin Associates

Jim Damicis has more than 25 years of experience in public policy research and analysis to lead decision making. Jim has served as the Senior Vice President of Camoin Associates since merging his company with Camoin eight years ago. He leads Camoin’s efforts in strategic planning, industry analysis, and assessing emerging trends in economic development. Prior to merging with Camoin Associates, Jim built PolicyOne Research into a leading research and analysis firm in Maine serving private and public clients throughout the Northeast. Jim also worked for the Maine Science and Technology Foundation (MSTF) serving three years as the Director of Research and Policy. While at MSTF, Jim was responsible for building and overseeing the Foundation’s public policy research capacity with the intent of building and fostering the state’s technology-based economic development. He also briefed the Governor, legislative leaders, and industry leaders on emerging opportunities and strategies needed to grow the State’s economy. Prior to working for MSTF, Jim worked as an Associate with the public policy consulting firm Planning Decisions in South Portland, ME, for five years. While at Planning Decisions, Jim served state and local government clients in the areas of economic and community development, service delivery analysis, finance and fiscal analysis, and demographic forecasting.

Jim is the past President of the Northeastern Economic Development Association and has served in leadership capacities at NEDA for more than ten years. In addition to NEDA, Jim serves as a member of the International Economic Development Council’s (IEDC) Economic Development Research Partners (EDRP) program and is an instructor for the certification course for strategic planning. Jim has earned a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Economics and Political Science from the University of Connecticut, Storrs, and a Master of Arts in Public Policy and Administration from the Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service at the University of Southern Maine.

Jim brings a holistic, innovative approach to Camoin’s market analysis and planning work. Through his work with the Communities of the Future and World Future Society, he is a national leader in preparing the profession, communities, and regions for an emerging economic future.

Jeff Marcel
Senior Partner
TIP Strategies

Before joining TIP, Jeff Marcell served as the president and CEO of the Economic Development Council of Seattle and King County (EDC). He was responsible for the organization’s mission of business and job creation, retention, expansion, and recruitment in King County. Jeff joined the EDC in July 2004, and during his tenure, rebuilt the organization’s client-based economic development program. He structured a new team of business development professionals targeting eight industry clusters: aerospace, financial services, fashion and apparel, IT, life science, clean technology, interactive media, and international business.

Prior to joining the EDC, Jeff was an economic development consultant with Angelou Economics in Austin, Texas, and a marketing executive in the Economic Development Division of the Greater Houston Partnership. He was responsible for retaining and recruiting corporate expansions and relocations by marketing and promoting the Houston region nationally and internationally. During his term with the Partnership, the organization brought in over 25,000 jobs to the Houston region with $3.4 billion in annual economic impact to the community.

In 2007 Jeff was named one of the Puget Sound Business Journal’s “40 Under 40.” In 2013 he received the MacArthur Award for Leadership from the Washington State Department of Commerce. Jeff also serves on the Executive Committee of the Workforce Development Council of Seattle-King County and as Chair of the Washington Economic Development Association. Additionally he is a founding Board Member of the Aerospace Futures Alliance. Jeff holds a doctorate of jurisprudence from South Texas College of Law and Bachelor of Arts degree in political science from the University of Illinois at Chicago.



  CEcD logo

This course meets the professional development requirements for the Certified Economic Developer (CEcD) exam. CEcDs earn recertification credits for participation.


Accommodations/Training Location

Kimpton Hotel Monaco Baltimore Inner Harbor
2 N Charles St
Baltimore, MD 21201
(443) 692-6170

Room Rate: $159
Cut off Date: May 22, 2018




By May 4

May 5 - June 1

*June 1

IEDC Member








Full Time Student**




*Walk-in registrations will be accepted. Full payment must be made on-site in order to attend the course.

** Copy of current transcript required.

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Refunds less a $60 cancellation fee will be issued for all cancellations received in writing to fax: (202) 223-4745 or email: prodev@iedconline.org at least 10 business days prior to the course - please allow 3-4 weeks. All registrations regardless of payment status are subject to the $60 cancellation fee. No refunds or credit transfers to a future course will be issued for cancellations received within 10 business days of the course. Telephone cancellations are not accepted. Attendee substitutions for a course may be made at any time prior to the course.