Argonne-Department of Commerce partnership aims to strengthen local economies impacted by COVID-19
Newswise — The National Economic Resilience Data Explorer (NERDE) brings together post-pandemic information in an easy-to-use online dashboard.
As the United States continues to grapple with the many economic challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic, a new data tool is helping provide communities with a clear and detailed understanding of the impacts of the pandemic on local economies — and whether those communities could be eligible for economic assistance.
Developed through a partnership between the U.S. Department of Commerce’s Economic Development Administration (EDA) and the U.S. Department of Energy’s Argonne National Laboratory, the National Economic Resilience Data Explorer (NERDE) provides a unique platform and easy to use to access data on economic distress, employment and gross domestic product, industry clusters and ongoing COVID-19 impacts for all Economic Development Districts (EDDs), as well as for the more than 3,000 counties across the country.
Community leaders can use the new tool to determine potential eligibility for EDA assistance under the U.S. bailout, the $1.9 trillion stimulus effort to accelerate the ongoing recovery after pandemic and improve local economic resilience to future shocks. The tool can also help inform local and regional economic development plans and initiatives.
The main dashboard page tracks near real-time impacts on local economies during the COVID-19 pandemic and provides insight into the recovery over time. Is the EDD or county economy worse now, in the same shape or better than before the pandemic? A look at the county’s Economic Impact Index scorecard provides the answer. The tool provides an important regional perspective on economic health and vitality, allowing community leaders to design and implement projects more strategically.
“This new hub will improve access to relevant data in support of all kinds of economic development projects,” said Craig Buerstatte, EDA’s deputy assistant secretary for regional affairs. “The capabilities found in this tool underscore the importance of regional industrial clusters, improve understanding of economic distress, and support recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic. This tool is a game-changer for all communities looking to build back better. »
“Pandemic recovery is a proposition that lasts for years, and communities and economic developers are likely asking questions about what they want their community’s economy to look like on the other side,” said Iain Hyde. , director of the National Center for Readiness Analysis within the Decision Sciences and Infrastructure Division at Argonne, who helped lead the NERDE effort.
Greg Guibert, principal resilience analyst at Argonne, agrees. “We have tried to show the strengths and assets of each community, but also their economic damage due to COVID-19. When economic developers think about recovery, the full picture is available to help identify the right solutions,” he said.
The dashboard, available on the Argonne website, also allows decision makers to drill down on the following:
- Unemployment rate and its evolution within the five main industries of the EDD or the county, classified by Gross Domestic Product (GDP).
- per capita income.
- Main industries in terms of employment and GDP and their growth rates.
- Concentration of local and regional industries.
- Economic risk factors or indicators of special needs such as persistent poverty, lack of innovation, high concentration of coal jobs, or proximity to federally recognized tribal lands.
- Economic changes over time, monthly throughout the COVID-19 pandemic.
Argonne and EDA will host a webinar to introduce NERDE to interested stakeholders on January 27, 2022 at 1:00 p.m. (EST). The webinar is free and open to the public. Registration is available here.