Rahm Emanuel's Innovative Plans to Grow Chicago

The city's mayor wants to take a regional path to growth, getting Chicago to cooperate with its 14 surrounding counties to capitalize on the area's collective resources. But will that work?

What's the Latest Development?


A refreshingly long-term economic growth strategy, too often curtailed by term limits and political favors, is emerging from the mayor's office in Chicago. As President Obama's former chief of staff, Chicago's mayor Rahm Emanuel knows a thing or two about politics. It is knowledge he will need to achieve his vision for a cooperative economic region that includes Chicago and its 14 surrounding counties. "The 14-county Chicago metro area, after all, would be the 20th largest economy if it were a country and is essential to the nation's future."

What's the Big Idea?

A new report called "A Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs" leads the mayor's initiative and is thought to be based in a 2010 economic conference hosted in Chicago by the London School of Economics. The report details ten strategies including, "becoming a leading hub of advanced manufacturing, further enhancing its position as a leading transportation and logistics hub, figuring out ways for employers to better articulate their employment needs, making Chicago a far more enviable tourist destination and making life far easier for entrepreneurs."

Photo credit: shutterstock.com


​There are two kinds of failure – but only one is honorable

Malcolm Gladwell teaches "Get over yourself and get to work" for Big Think Edge.

Big Think Edge
  • Learn to recognize failure and know the big difference between panicking and choking.
  • At Big Think Edge, Malcolm Gladwell teaches how to check your inner critic and get clear on what failure is.
  • Subscribe to Big Think Edge before we launch on March 30 to get 20% off monthly and annual memberships.
Keep reading Show less
Photo by Alina Grubnyak on Unsplash
Mind & Brain

Do human beings have a magnetic sense? Biologists know other animals do. They think it helps creatures including bees, turtles and birds navigate through the world.

Keep reading Show less

Harvard: Men who can do 40 pushups have a 'significantly' lower risk of heart disease

Turns out pushups are more telling than treadmill tests when it comes to cardiovascular health.

Airman 1st Class Justin Baker completes another push-up during the First Sergeants' push-up a-thon June 28, 2011, Eielson Air Force Base, Alaska. Participants were allowed 10 minutes to do as many push-ups as they could during the fundraiser. Airman Baker, a contract specialist assigned to the 354th Contracting Squadron, completed 278 push-ups. (U.S. Air Force photo/Airman 1st Class Janine Thibault)
Surprising Science
  • Men who can perform 40 pushups in one minute are 96 percent less likely to have cardiovascular disease than those who do less than 10.
  • The Harvard study focused on over 1,100 firefighters with a median age of 39.
  • The exact results might not be applicable to men of other age groups or to women, researchers warn.
Keep reading Show less

U.S. reacts to New Zealand's gun ban

On Thursday, New Zealand moved to ban an array of semi-automatic guns and firearms components following a mass shooting that killed 50 people.

(Photo by Spencer Platt/Getty Images)
Politics & Current Affairs
  • Gun control supporters are pointing to the ban as an example of swift, decisive action that the U.S. desperately needs.
  • Others note the inherent differences between the two nations, arguing that it is a good thing that it is relatively hard to pass such legislation in such a short timeframe.
  • The ban will surely shape future conversations about gun control in the U.S.
Keep reading Show less