A long road to recovery

Economic forecasters say recovery from the current recession will be a slow process.

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Speakers and panelists at this week’s Economic Forecast 2010 in Eugene said local recovery from the recession will be a long process.

But keynote speaker Joe Cortright said the Eugene community has an innovative talent pool that has the potential to come out of the recession strong.

Cortright said — and the other economists agreed — that jobs created during the current recovery won’t necessarily be the same jobs that disappeared over the past couple of years, when Lane County lost 10,400 jobs. And businesses that thrive as the economy regains its footing won’t necessarily be the same ones that shriveled during the deepest recession in at least 30 years, he said.

But Cortright said the Eugene-Springfield community, with the University of Oregon as a key ingredient, has the right recipe for a “knowledge-based economy” that may well lead to long-term economic health. The university offers Eugene a labor pool filled with talent and innovation, he said. The community displays its connectedness through civic engagement and diversity, and its distinctiveness can be measured by what Cortright called a “weirdness index” that compares residents’ behaviors to those of average Americans.

Read the full story at The Register-Guard.

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