Latest Posts




  • Gen Zers not as concerned with PTO as employers think

    As Baby Boomers continue to retire and a labor shortage continues to impact industries such as trades and manufacturing, employers are in need of new, young recruits (Gen Zers) to fill these positions. But despite the growing job openings in construction, manufacturing, and related fields, employers continue to face recruiting challenges. Where is the disconnect?

  • School closings could significantly reduce future earnings of today`s students

    Considering the fact that educational attainment has a positive effect on earnings, school closings are bound to have a significant negative impact on the future earnings of today`s students.

  • Funding students instead of systems

    The debate over in-person school this fall continues on in Minnesota. Returning all students to the classroom is one of three possible scenarios being considered by the Minnesota Department of Education, Department of Health, and the Governor's office. If schools don't reopen (which, would likely cause students to fall further behind, and given our persistent education disparities, would not be good), then it's important we focus on student-centered solutions that don't force parents to continue paying for closed schools and a status quo whose ROI was questionable pre-COVID. 


  • In Minneapolis, less policing is bringing more crime

    That reduced policing leads to more crime is another manifestation of the consistent research finding that more cops means less crime. What will happen to crime in Minneapolis if the City Council gets it way and there are no cops? 

  • Costs of Energy Efficiency Investments Are Double Household’s Energy Savings, Study Including Former Obama Economic Advisor Concludes

    Presumptive Democratic Presidential candidate, Joe Biden, recently released his Biden-Sanders Unity Task Force Recommendations, a document spanning 110 pages and covering issues like “combating the climate crisis and pursuing environmental justice.” To accomplish this task, they state: “We will address barriers and increase funding for programs that enable energy efficiency improvements for low-income families in urban and rural areas, including through the Weatherization Assistance Program (WAP) and the Rural Utilities Service.” However, a recent study that included Michael Greenstone, who served as Chief Economist for President Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, has found that the costs of energy efficiency expenditures under the Weatherization Assistance...

  • Lack of access to affordable childcare costs Indiana employers $1.8B a year

    There are currently no estimates for the economic cost of lack of access to affordable childcare on the whole state of Minnesota. But the high cost on employers due to lack of access to childcare in Indiana points to a similar high cost for employers in Minnesota. Minnesota and Indiana are both among the least affordable states for childcare, so the costs on their economies from lack of childcare are bound to be high.

  • More employers looking less at credentials, more at skills

    Pre-COVID, the supply of and demand for middle-skill workers created a mismatch in our labor market. The “skills gap” pushed employers to come up with solutions that would combat the talent shortage, focusing less on the piece of paper a candidate had and more on the skills the interested applicant had or could learn. Now, given the pandemic and changing economy, this prioritization of skills over a certain type of degree is getting a new push, according to The Hechinger Report, through a trend that was already under way before the health care crisis: “pre-hiring assessments.” Skeptical that university degrees...