Local Planning for Economic Development: Florida's Growth Management Act in Practice


  • Betty Waldron


The terms "growth" and "development" are increasingly being viewed as distinct, but interrelated, processes with spatially-specific outcomes (Flammang, 1979). Local development efforts must cope with rapidly changing economic situations, and the roles of technology, innovation, and entrepreneurship are recognized as critical to the long-term development process (Malecki and Nijkamp, 1988). "New" economic development strategies address community-specific needs for new and better jobs, diversified economic bases, and revitalized economic environments that build on local strengths to shape the community's economic future. As an endogenous process that involves local governments and public or private organizations, "local economic development" attempts to " ... stimulate or maintain business activity and/or employment ... to develop local employment opportunities in sectors that improve the community ..." (Blakely, 1989, p. 15). Local development efforts also occur in the context of planning, overseen by local, regional and state governments.