The Surdna Foundation
The Abell Foundation
- Central Maryland Transportation Alliance
- Baltimore Regional Initiative Developing Genuine Equality (BRIDGE)
- Job Opportunities Task Force
- 1000 Friends of Maryland
- Maryland Department of Planning
The SEED Initiative’s primary objective is to develop, promote, and implement an equitable and sustainable economic development approach in PlanMaryland, the state’s first state development plan, and other state and local policies. While focusing on creating employment opportunities for under and unemployed populations, the SEED Initiative will integrate economic development within a larger sustainability agenda in ways that will be supported by government agencies, key business stakeholders, and large segments of the civic sector.
This sustainable economic development approach presumes that job opportunity creation is dependent not only on the retention and recruitment of new firms and industries, but on investments in human and natural capital, on the removal of obstacles between job opportunities and underserved populations, and on appropriate and integrated public transportation, land use, environmental, and social service policies. The approach must both improve environmental quality while promoting a more equitable distribution of income. And it must be sustainable over the long term. Subject to continued funding, the initiative will:
- Conduct extensive analyses of economic, social and environmental trends, focusing specifically on gaps in existing programs and emerging economic development opportunities statewide.
- Empower a coalition of civic and non-profit organizations to engage communities through outreach and advocacy.
- Ensure coordination among SEED partners while strengthening linkages and networks with other local, state, and national organizations to ensure the initiative’s success.
- Assist the Maryland Department of Planning, other state agencies, and local governments in developing sustainable and equitable economic development plans and policies.
- Prepare and disseminate “A Guidebook for Local Governments on Sustainable and Equitable Economic Development.”
- Produce, adopt, and promote a sustainable and equitable economic development element of PlanMaryland, the state development plan.
- Organize workshops to provide training on key issues and to disseminate new jobs-neighborhood connectivity and workforce development tools.
- Review state and local plans.
- Engage in community organizing, networking, and policy activism.
- Hold local governments accountable to the combined goals of economic, environmental and social sustainability.
Economic Growth Centers in Maryland. NCSG analysis has shown that 38.8% of Maryland's jobs are located within 1.2% of the State's land area (shown here in blue).
The National Center for Smart Growth is leading the SEED Initiative’s data analysis. The NCSG is currently reviewing economic, social and environmental trends at the state, regional and employment cluster levels. The analysis will also include opportunity mapping, which involves selecting variables that are indicative of high (and low) opportunity such as the accessibility of sustainable employment, high performing schools, a safe environment, quality health care, and adequate transportation. Using its statewide transportation model, the NCSG will generate opportunity maps for those with and without cars, and for those with low, medium, and high skill levels. Multiple indicators of opportunity will be presented at various geographic scales enabling the construction of a comprehensive “opportunity map” for the state.
Maps and graphs of our initial analyses will be available shortly.