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Innovate Northeast Florida releases final report detailing economic development

Recommendations designed to grow Northeast Florida’s economy are outlined in the Innovate Northeast Florida Target Industry Implementation Plan, a five-year community economic development strategic plan, released by the Northeast Florida Regional Council and JAXUSA Partnership, a division of JAX Chamber.

Presented during the JAXUSA Regional Economic Development Forum, sponsored by Stellar and AT&T, to more than 150 regional business leaders, the plan makes recommendations to grow the region’s target industries – advanced manufacturing, aviation, financial services, health and life sciences, information technology and logistics. Business development, marketing, talent and entrepreneurship initiatives for the next five years will focus on the business clusters detailed in the plan.

The plan recommends prioritizing four niche industry sub-clusters to kick off implementation plans – aircraft and aviation components, financial services support, health care information technology and supply chain management. The plan states that these industries offer a high probability of success in the short-term that will fuel long-term efforts. Numerous other sub-clusters outlined in the plan best match the region’s competitive strengths, assets and objectives.

Recommendations to grow the sub-clusters are centered around goals related to talent development, entrepreneurship and innovation, business climate, physical infrastructure and marketing.

The plan is the culmination of many sources of input and research, including a 50+ member project Steering Committee, input from economic development practitioners in each county in the Northeast Florida region, stakeholder interviews and focus groups, results from a 2,540 participant survey and extensive analysis of recent studies and federal, state and county data.

A team of national consultants are helping facilitate the Innovate Northeast Florida project, including Avalanche Consulting, McCallum Sweeney Consulting, the Council for Adult and Experiential Learning and Infinity Global Solutions. The project is funded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) and WorkSource. A copy of the executive summary is available at

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