America in 2050: More Decentralized

The U.S. is expected to grow by more than 100 million people over the next 40 years, and much of that growth will occur in urban areas. Joel Kotkin says that this growth will highlight the inefficiencies of centralized power.
May 5, 2010, 7am PDT | Nate Berg
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"The implications of this change will be profound for governments-perhaps in ways not now commonly anticipated. Many 'progressives' believe a more diverse, populous nation will need more guidance from Washington, D.C., but a more complex and varied country will increasingly not fit well into a one-size-fits-all approach.

Although the economic crisis of 2008 led to a rapid rise of federal power, there has been a stunning and largely unexpected push-back reflected, in part, by the tea party movement. Some states have passed laws that seek to restrict federal prerogatives on a host of issues. More importantly, public opinion, measured in numerous surveys, seems to be drifting away from major expansions of government power."

Kotkin argues that densification of urban areas will largely be resisted, and that the suburbs and exurbs will remain important and populated parts of the American economy.

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Published on Monday, May 3, 2010 in Governing
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