World Class Greater Philadelphia looks toward improving the region

The Economy League of Greater Philadelphia has 2026 on its mind.

That’s when America turns 250, when the national spotlight will cast its glare on Independence Hall.

Now, here’s the Economy League’s question for the Philadelphia region: How do we become “world class”? How do we get there by then?

That’s the driving force behind World Class Greater Philadelphia, a multi-year effort spearheaded by the Economy League but based on the input of some 1,500 regional leaders.

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“This economy is too big for any one entity to control all of it,” said Economy League Executive Director Steve Wray. “We’re going to need everybody working simultaneously, but all toward shared goals.”

The initiative will hone in on three major issues. Its solutions to each are branded as ‘Global Positioning Strategies.’

These are the priorities:

Education and talent 
Business growth

Each GPS has a strategy group of about 30 big names. The idea is to get the region’s power brokers all pushing in the same direction.

“These GPSes are meant to serve as direction for ongoing discussion,” said Economy League board chair Rick Altman at a recent event at WHYY. “[They are], most importantly, focused sets of action to bring about the change required for us to be considered a world class region.”

It’s no easy task, Wray admits. But he says his group will continue to convene key players, working behind the scenes, trying to realize a shared vision.

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