News

James and Deborah Fallows In the Press

Point of Reference in Bloomberg Cities

Posted on October 19th, 2018 at 1:00 PM

Bloomberg Cities, James Anderson

In his October 18, 2018 article, Bloomberg's James Anderson advances one of the main themes in Our Towns, namely that "so much of our country's most promising and hopeful innovation is coming from the smaller cities and towns of the Heartland."

The Fallowses and other leaders interested and involved in this work are together this weekend at the Heartland Summit in Bentonville, AR. Anderson concludes, "What's driving these cities and towns isn't a thirst for disruption but, rather, the public interest in having strong communities and vibrant local economies where all people have a meaningful opportunity to get ahead. And that's an idea that every civic innovator -- from coast to coast and everywhere in between -- should get behind."

Point of Reference in The Christian Science Monitor

Posted on October 15th, 2018 at 5:59 PM

Christian Science Monitor

In his October 15, 2018 column, Editor Mark Sappenfield heralds, "The triumph of gray," with the thought, based on the Christian Science Monitor's cover story this week that, "Perhaps the answer to growing concerns about capitalism is not in black or white -- it is in the perpetual reconsideration and recalibration that reveals the symphony within the gray."

He concludes with a reference to the Fallows and what they found and reported on in Our Towns. "In smaller towns, where a strong sense of community means everyone is an "us," companies and the wealthy often act differently. From Holland, Mich., to Columbus, Miss., they invest in local schools and art and health. They spread wealth naturally and without compulsion. The answer to the challenges of capitalism, then, might simply be wrestling with how we can best expand the concentric circles of "us."

Featured in Governing

Posted on October 14th, 2018 at 3:11 PM

Governing, 9-28-18

In his 9-28-18 article in Governing, senior editor Alan Ehrenhalt discusses in the Fallowes' Our Towns and Bruce Katz and Jeremy Nowak's The New Localism that, he maintains, both make the argument that, "Federal and state government may be a mess, but local governments are an increasingly positive force, innovating and solving problems that would have been beyond them a generation ago."

Ehrenhalt posits, "The most interesting challenge may not be identifying these tangible triumphs but gaining insight into what makes them happen."

Finally, as the Fallowses conclude in Our Towns, he resolves, "there is one common strand that runs through nearly every successful locality these authors visited. It's the presence of collaboration: the ability of local elected officials to work with chambers of commerce, universities, foundations and other nonprofits to formulate ambitious plans and see them through."

Highlighted in the Canyon Courier (Colorado)

Posted on October 12th, 2018 at 3:25 PM

Canyon Courier

   In Jim Rohrer's October 12, 2018 column, he highlights Our Towns as, "an uplifting book that left me believing that the American grit,   determination and ingenuity of which we have always been so proud are still working for us." He then provides his own examples from his hometown of Evergreen, CO.

Additionally, he writes:

"As I read the many examples of success, I became more hopeful. The couple made multiple visits and were able to actually see the progress between visits. The signs of backbone and character are repeated throughout the book in all parts of our country."

Point of Reference in Bloomberg

Posted on October 10th, 2018 at 7:11 PM

Bloomberg, Noah Smith

Bloomberg Opinion columnist Noah Smith recently discussed the big dividends for American industry that came out of technologies developed with the help of U.S. government-led research efforts from agencies such as DARPA (the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency). While lamenting the lack of an equivalent agency to deal with economic challenges, he references the Fallowses' documentation of cities that are finding success in rebounding from economic and other challenges.

Furthermore, Smith writes, the Fallowses found that, "the strategies they use often look similar -- cultivating public-private partnerships, leveraging nearby universities, developing new local tentpole industries and revitalizing their downtowns."

He reasons that a U.S. office of industrial policy could compile, analyze, synthesize and share successful strategies as well as connect local leaders and furnish seed money for academic research centers.

This sharing of the most effective and dynamic ideas being put into practice in cities across the country is also the objective of Jim and Deb's talks in Our Towns Events across the nation.

Reviewed in Charleston Gazette-Mail

Posted on October 9th, 2018 at 4:22 PM

Charleston Gazette-Mail Masthead

In his October 9, 2018 Op-Ed, Dan Foster discusses the Fallowses' visits to more than 40 cities over the course of their four-year journey across the United States, including two to Charleston (WV). He writes:

Charleston Gazette-Mail Quote

Foster concludes:

"The message to me is twofold -- perhaps we aren't as bad off as many people think and, as we look to the future, there are diverse strategies, some short-term, but more long-term, that Charlestonians need to consider. To dig deeper into these issues and to help you to formulate your own opinions, I encourage you to read "Our Towns," as we all work together on this continuing journey to a new and improved Charleston."

Reviewed in Arkansas Democrat Gazette

Posted on October 7th, 2018 at 4:51 PM

AR Democrat Gazette, Little Rock Could Learn

In his Sunday, October 7, 2018 column, Rex Nelson, Senior Editor at the Arkansas Democrat Gazette discusses Jim's recent lecture, the John Netherland Heiskell Distinguished Lecture for the Central Arkansas Library System.

He writes:

"The couple didn't visit Little Rock as part of the research for the book, but there are planty of lessons from other cities. Our Towns should be required reading for all five candidates for mayor, every member of the Little Rock Board of Directors and business and civic leaders."

Featured in Navarre Press

Posted on October 5th, 2018 at 1:09 PM

Navarre Press

"No one succeeds by trying to be the next Silicon Valley. That was the message of author, journalist and civic advocate James Fallows to a gathering of Pensacola community leaders seeking to learn what makes a strong town at CivicCon Sept. 25."

Read the full article in the Oct. 4 issue of the Navarre Press.

Point of Reference in Bloomberg Opinion Column

Posted on October 3rd, 2018 at 3:15 PM

Fallows, Bloomberg Sioux Falls

In his October 2, 2018 column, Justin Fox discusses why Sioux Falls, SD, despite not following any traditional recipe for civic success, is booming. Its metro-area population has increased 13.5 percent since 2010 (and 68.8 percent since 1990), to 259,094.

Fox states:

"I am not the first to attempt to answer this question: James and Deborah Fallows devote the first chapter of their new book "Our Towns: A 100,000-Mile Journey into the Heart of America" to it, and if you want a detailed account complete with Macy's Thanksgiving Day Parade balloons (manufactured in Sioux Falls by Raven Industries Inc.), that's where you really need to go." 

Featured in Forbes

Posted on October 1st, 2018 at 3:08 PM

Forbes, Gary Stoller