Students submitting winning proposal will win $2,000 prize
Can teams of undergraduate students take on Mayor Jane Campbell’s “Connecting Cleveland: The Lakefront Plan”, a project aimed at reclaiming the city’s lakefront for the public, and answer the question of whether the benefits of the West Shoreway redevelopment outweigh the construction and other costs?
Undergraduate students at Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management participating in the 3-credit Economics 395 course taught by professors Mari Rege and Gary Murphy are about to find out. As each student obtains hands on experience with economic public policy analysis through this S.A.G.E.S. capstone experiential learning course, they are also competing in the Richard Shatten Public Policy Case Competition. Thirty students, in teams of 3, have spent much of their spring semester examining plans to reconstruct Cleveland’s West Shoreway into a slow traffic, tree-lined boulevard with a landscaped median, sidewalk, bike pathway and traffic signals. They are attempting to determine how a monetary value can be put on the community’s benefit from the project and whether the benefits to the community justify the estimated $49.8 million cost of construction and cost of increased commuter time.
Teams competing for the $2,000 first place prize will present their proposal before a panel of judges on April 21, 2005, at the Botanical Gardens as part of a celebration of the life of the late Richard Shatten, the Ameritech Professor for the Practice of Regional Economics at Weatherhead and executive director of the Center for Regional Economic Issues (REI). Shatten, a public activist, spent his life trying to revitalize the Cleveland economy first through “Cleveland Tomorrow” and later through his work at REI. He was the guiding hand behind the public-private partnerships that reinvigorated Cleveland in the 1980’s and 1990’s. His death in 2002 was a great loss to the university and to the Cleveland communities.
“Richard was the nation’s leading authority on what it takes to turn around a declining economy,” said James B. Rebitzer, the Francis Tracy Carlton Professor of Economic and the Chair of the Department of Economics at Case’s Weatherhead School of Management. “He was an important voice shaping public and private economic decision-making in Northeast Ohio.”
The student teams’ projects will be judged by David Beach, Director of Eco City; Joe Roman, Director of Greater Cleveland Partnership; Terry Hamilton Brown, President of University Circle, Inc.; Will Voegele, Regional Director of Development for City Enterprises; Scott Shane, Ph.D., Professor of Economics and Entrepreneurship at Case Western Reserve University’s Weatherhead School of Management, Academic Director of REI, and the SBC Chair in Regional Economic Development at Weatherhead; and Ed Morrison, Executive Director of REI. First, second and third place prizes will be awarded.