The IPL newsletter: Volume 17, Issue 344

News from the IPL


NIST Launches Competition for Manufacturing Centers in 11 States

As part of a multiyear effort to refresh its Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) centers across the country, the U.S. Commerce Department’s National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has launched the fourth round of competitions to award new cooperative funding agreements for centers in 11 states. The MEP centers provide a variety of customized technical services to primarily small and medium-sized manufacturers to help them increase profits, create jobs and establish a foundation for long-term business growth and productivity. NIST anticipates it will fund nearly $60 million over five years to organizations that will operate centers in Delaware, Hawaii, Iowa, Kansas, Maine, Mississippi, New Mexico, Nevada, North Dakota, South Carolina and Wyoming.

Cities Launch Investment Funds to Attract Tech and Improve Quality of Life

SSTI Weekly Digest
As the potential nexus of tech-based economic development and community development, cities play an important role in not only making their cities attractive to startups that help drive economic prosperity, but also in bringing together community members to take collective action and generate solutions to common problems. In an attempt to address both of these important issues, several metros have announced new city-backed investment funds that support both startup growth and impact the lives of city residents. These city-backed investment funds are intended to help create, expand, and retain high growth startups. Efforts are being undertaken in Sacramento, Kansas City, San Antonio, and Montreal. This post summarizes the most recent initiatives in each city.

US, NSF to Put $400M into Advanced Wireless Research Initiative for 5G Networks

Ingrid Lunden, TechCrunch
As President Obama approaches the end of his tenure in the White House, his team is launching a wireless networking research project that it hopes could be part of his wider legacy in the world of tech. Recently, the Obama administration announced the Advanced Wireless Research Initiative, a group backed by $400 million in investment that will work on research aimed to “maintain U.S. leadership and win the next generation of mobile technology” and specifically developing wireless networking tech that will offer speeds 100 times faster than the 4G and LTE networks that are being used today. Led by the National Science Foundation with participation from other organizations, tech companies like Samsung and carriers, the AWRI will receive $400 million from the government over the next seven years to develop and test new wireless networking technology in four “city-scale” testing platforms.

Editor's Pick

Core Values: Why American Companies are Moving Downtown

Smart Growth America
This report examines the characteristics, motives, and preferences of companies that have either relocated, opened new offices, or expanded in walkable downtowns between 2010 and 2015. Smart Growth America partnered with global real estate advisors Cushman & Wakefield to identify nearly 500 companies that have made such a move in the past five years. Of those, we interviewed representatives from more than 40 companies to gain a better understanding of this emerging trend.

Innovation Policy

Where to Locate Innovative Activities in Global Value Chains?: Does Co-Location Matter?

Rene Belderbos, Leo Sleuwaegen, Dieter Somers, and Koen De Backer, OECD
With the emergence of global value chains (GVCs), production processes are increasingly fragmented and dispersed across different countries. Although many MNEs still exhibit an important ‘home bias’ in their global innovation activities, a growing number of firms have offshored R&D and innovative activities to foreign locations. Is the more recent offshoring of R&D and innovation linked to the prior waves of manufacturing offshoring? The fear in OECD economies is that because of co-location effects between production and innovative activities, the loss of certain manufacturing/assembly activities may result in a loss of innovative capabilities (R&D, design, etc.) in the longer-term. The offshoring of R&D and innovation within GVCs poses new challenges to economic policy in OECD and emerging economies. For example, how can countries attract inward R&D investments by foreign MNEs? Should outward R&D investments by MNEs be a concern for the countries in which the MNEs are headquartered?

Do Tax Incentives for Research Increase Firm Innovation? An RD Design for R&D

Antoine Dechezleprêtre, Elias Einiö, Ralf Martin, Kieu-Trang Nguyen, and John Van Reenen, LSE
This paper presents evidence of a causal impact of research and development (R&D) tax incentives on innovation. It exploits a change in the asset-based size thresholds for eligibility for R&D tax subsidies and implement a Regression Discontinuity Design using administrative tax data on the population of UK firms. There are statistically and economically significant effects of the tax change on both R&D and patenting (even when quality-adjusted). R&D tax price elasticities are large at about 2.6, probably because the treated group is from a sub-population of smaller firms and subject to financial constraints. There does not appear to be pre-policy manipulation of assets around the thresholds that could undermine our design. Over the 2006-11 period aggregate business R&D would be around 10% lower in the absence of the tax relief scheme. The researchers also show that the R&D generated by the tax policy creates positive spillovers on the innovations of technologically related firms.

Cities, Clusters & Regions

The Sun Still Rises: London After the Brexit

Greg Clark, The Brookings Institution
London’s position as global city will not necessarily be substantially threatened by the United Kingdom’s vote to leave the European Union, but it will require some very important adjustments and confident negotiations, starting right now. Greg Clark analyzes London’s strengths and weaknesses following the Brexit vote.

The State of the Cities 2016

National League of Cities
As the economy rebounds and fiscal health stabilizes, mayors across the country are using their State of the City speeches to tout the progress their communities have made through hard work, innovation and collaboration. The State of the City speech is a mayor’s opportunity to reflect on the city’s recent accomplishments, current challenges and roadmap for the future. Its words provide unique insight into the state of municipal leadership, revealing the issues that matter most to city leaders. In 2016, mayors are focusing most on economic development, public safety, budgets, infrastructure and housing as broad strategies to advance their cities. The prominence of these top-line issues, or those receiving what we call “significant coverage” within mayors’ speeches, has been consistent in the three years since we started the analysis. Economic development has been the most widespread issue addressed by mayors in 2014, 2015 and 2016. Infrastructure, public safety and budgets have remained in the top five, and education and housing have vied for a spot in the top rankings over the past few years.

The City as Innovation Machine

Richard Florida, Patrick Adler, and Charlotte Mellander, The Martin Prosperity Institute
This paper seeks to put cities and regions at the very center of the processes of innovation and entrepreneurship. To do so, the researchers marry the insights of Jane Jacobs and more urban and regional thinking and research on the role of the city and the region to the literature on innovation and entrepreneurship going back to Joseph Schumpeter. Theory and research on innovation and entrepreneurship and their geography privileges the firm, industry clusters and/or the individual and poses the city as a container for them. Jacobs famously theorized that it is the city that is the key organizing unit for innovation, entrepreneurship, and economic growth. Marrying Jacobs’ insights on cities to those of Schumpeter on innovation, the authors argue that innovation and entrepreneurship do not simply take in place in cities but in fact require them.

Statistics & Indicators

2016 Global Manufacturing Competitiveness Index

Deloitte and the Council on Competitiveness
Contrary to what you are hearing on the campaign trail, the United States is poised to become the most competitive manufacturing nation by 2020 according to this report. The rankings reveal a shift among the world’s traditional manufacturing powerhouses, with the U.S. leapfrogging China to reach the top spot. The prediction is based on an in-depth analysis of survey responses from more than 500 chief executive officers and senior leaders at manufacturing companies around the world.

The Best Global Cities for Working in Tech

Expert Market
There is no question that Silicon Valley, in the Bay area of San Francisco, is the original and most successful tech hub in the world – but is it the best one to live in if you are starting a tech career or company? That is the question Expert Market have answered using data that focuses not only on the potential business success of an area, but also quality of life factors. The analysis focuses on 8 categories, 4 ‘work factors’ and 4 ‘life factors’ to determine which startup city really is the best one to live in. Using this year’s 20 biggest tech hubs, as noted by startup experts Compass, the researchers collated data from each category to give a new, more balanced ranking of the top tech hubs in the world! Toronto ranks third and Montreal ninth.

OECD Taxonomy of Economic Activities Based on R&D Intensity

Fernando Galindo-Rueda and Fabien Verger, OECD
This paper provides a new taxonomy of industries according to their level of R&D intensity – the ratio of R&D to value added within an industry. Manufacturing and non-manufacturing activities are clustered into five groups (high, medium-high, medium, medium-low, and low R&D intensity industries), drawing on new and expanded evidence from most OECD countries and some partner economies. This paper also reports on differences in R&D intensity within industries across countries. This document represents an update and reframing of previous OECD taxonomies based on earlier versions of the International Standard Industrial Classification (ISIC), including services, whose coverage has improved in the R&D tables published by OECD (ANBERD). This taxonomy aims to support the presentation of statistics for industry groups when R&D is a relevant discriminant factor. Other existing or in-development taxonomies may be more appropriate for capturing differences in overall knowledge intensity or technology use.

Measuring the Link Between Public Procurement and Innovation

Silvia Appelt and Fernando Galindo-Rueda, OECD
This paper presents the findings of a recent OECD project on the measurement of the link between public procurement and innovation that is intended to contribute to the review and implementation of the OECD measurement frameworks for R&D and innovation. The report highlights what concepts, definitions and measurement approaches can be used, with currently available data or suitably adapted sources, to produce policy-relevant indicators on the use of innovation procurement and carry out empirical analyses on the impact of public procurement on R&D, innovation and broader economic outcomes. Exploiting recent R&D and innovation survey data and administrative procurement records, it provides novel multi-country evidence on the incidence of public procurement of innovation. An exploratory analysis based on procurement, company account, R&D, patent and trademark data helps showcase the use of combined micro-data sources for analytical applications and points out important links between firm-level procurement activity, R&D and economic performance.

Policy Digest

The Productivity-Inclusiveness Nexus

Eight years on from the start of the economic and financial crisis, the international economic context remains challenging, with growth still modest in advanced economies and continuing to slow in key emerging markets. While this weakness is in part cyclical, reflecting the realities of the post-crisis environment, it also results from a worrying slowdown in productivity growth which predates the crisis. Indeed, some 90% of OECD countries experienced a decline in trend labour productivity growth after the turn of the millennium, and the slowdown has now also spread to emerging market economies, despite their comparatively low productivity levels and continued scope for catch up.

Of equal cause for concern is the fact that this decline in productivity growth has played out against a global backdrop of rising, or persistently high, inequalities of income, wealth and well-being. In 2012, the average income of the top 10% of earners in the OECD area grew to just under 10 times that of the bottom 10%, up from around 7 times in the mid-1980s. In terms of wealth, the situation is considerably starker, with the top 10% controlling half of all total household wealth in 2012 in the 18 OECD countries with comparable data.

Among the myriad challenges facing our economies, few pose greater obstacles to better economic performance than the productivity slowdown and the rise in inequalities. Both have been exacerbated in recent years, as the climate of low investment and high unemployment bequeathed by the crisis has taken its toll, but they also reflect more fundamental challenges with the way our economies function.

In such a context, we can no longer take it for granted that technological advances, and the related innovations in processes and business models, will automatically lead to better economic performance and stronger productivity growth. At the same time, there is no guarantee that the benefits of higher levels of growth, or higher levels of productivity in certain sectors, when they materialize, will be broadly shared across the population as a whole. On the contrary, there is a risk of a vicious cycle setting in, with individuals with fewer skills and poorer access to opportunities often confined to operate in low productivity, precarious jobs, and – in many emerging-market countries – in the informal economy. This reduces aggregate productivity, widens inequality, and ultimately undermines policy efforts to increase productivity and growth.

This report on the Productivity-Inclusiveness Nexus gathers the most recent empirical evidence on the main factors behind slowing productivity gains and rising inequality; it suggests possible common foundations and linkages between these two trends; it draws preliminary conclusions on the type of policy packages that are needed and on the implications for policy making, and it also suggests the specific areas where more research may be needed.

The main message of this report is a call for policy makers to adopt a broader, more inclusive, approach to productivity growth that considers how to expand the productive assets of an economy by investing in the skills of its people and providing an environment where all firms have a fair chance to succeed, including in lagging regions. The overriding aim behind this is to broaden the productive base of the economy to generate strong and sustainable future productivity gains that everyone is empowered to contribute to, whilst also ensuring that productivity growth benefits all parts of society, in terms of improved living standards and opportunities. Achieving this will require a comprehensive policy framework to account for the multiple interactions between inequalities and productivity and how these interactions play out across countries, regions, firms and between individuals. Such a framework can help policy makers to put in place ex-ante and ex-post measures to promote synergies and deal with trade-offs when productivity policies impact on inequality.

Policy Implications

Ensuring that all individuals, firms and regions are empowered to both contribute to improved productivity growth and benefit from it in terms of improved living standards and that all firms have an equal shot at thriving and contributing to higher productivity growth is key to addressing the productivity-equality nexus: 

  • It first means looking at policies aimed at ensuring that all individuals are equipped to, and supported in, fulfilling their productive potential with adequate investment in skills and health and good opportunities for quality jobs. Inequalities in terms of access to education have decreased to a large extent given the expansion both at the school and University levels. However, differences in quality have greater implications today than ever before given the increased demand for highly skilled people that knowledge based societies and the pace of technological change have created. Policies at the individual level should also include an adequate social safety net and labour market activation policies. Focussing on the bottom 40% who have fewer such opportunities is particularly important and will require reducing the barriers they face in accessing life-long learning, digital technologies, innovation, finance, and entrepreneurship.
  • Such policies can work in unison with measures aimed at firms to support innovation and experimentation at the frontier and its diffusion throughout the economy, in areas related to: skills, labour, competition, product market regulation, financial regulation, innovation and regulations related to the corporate sector.
  • The regional and urban levels are key. While many productivity-promoting policy interventions are “spatially blind”, others have an important place-based dimension. For instance, local conditions are crucial to the effectiveness of policy efforts to improve information about labour-market conditions and ensure more effective training or subsidies to employers. For similar reasons, economy-wide policies aimed at increasing skill levels must often undergo local adaptation to be effective. In addition, regional and urban policies can do much to reduce or remove the barriers to opportunity faced by disadvantaged groups that are related to housing and transport. Finally, regional development policies also promote innovation diffusion to lagging regions. The details of policy packages that deliver stronger and broader based productivity growth and reduce inequality will depend on each country’s specific circumstances, governance andinstitutional settings. This means recalibrating traditional ‘silo’ policies to address these challenges. Indeed, in all countries, designing and implementing these policy packages require a renewed approach to policy making where different government departments, agencies and ministries work together to deliver joined-up solutions and where the regional and spatial dimensions of policies are taken into account. Mechanisms to strengthen public governance, including a whole-of-government approach, and reinforce public institutions and avoid rent seeking and corruption are especially important. Given the global nature of these challenges, deepening international collaboration and co-ordination will be required in a number of areas, including tax and innovation policies.


3rd International Workshop on the Sharing Economy

Southampton, England, 15-16 September, 2016
Enabled by digital platform technologies, the sharing economy allows households, individuals, businesses, government and non-government organisations to engage in collaborative production, distribution and consumption of goods and services. It can potentially lead to an increase in employment, economic efficiency, sustainable use of resources, broadened access to highly valuable assets, and enhanced social relationships. The sharing economy can also give rise to innovation driven business models appealing to a different group of customers, normally ignored by mainstream businesses, and based on a novel supply chain and operations model which makes it possible to outsource to platform users a significant portion of business functions. These inevitably challenge conventional business and policy thinking about the role and functions of customers, employees and the organization. To no small degree, the interest in the sharing economy is fueled by ongoing international media stories about the expansion of new and highly successful sharing economy platforms (such as Uber, Airbnb, Taskrabbit, Blablacar, etc.). The academic debate is yet to fully catch up with this business media buzz. It has only now started to critically investigate the popular claims about the sharing economy. There is still very little systematic understanding of the antecedents of the sharing economy, its organizational forms and their novelty, the enabling and constraining factors of the sharing economy and its impacts. Hence, the purpose of this workshop is to engage with different strands of academic scholarship on the sharing economy originating across different disciplines (such as management and business studies, economics, geography, legal studies, sociology, political sciences and other disciplines) to help to develop an integrated understanding of the sharing economy phenomenon, its drivers, forms and implications for individuals, businesses and society.  

OECD Blue Sky Forum on Science and Technology Indicators

Ghent, Belgium, 19-21 September, 2016
Every ten years the OECD Blue Sky Forum engages the policy community, data users and providers into an open dialogue to review and develop its long-term agenda on science, technology and innovation (STI) data and indicators. This event is known as the “OECD Blue Sky Forum”, an open and unconstrained discussion on evidence gaps in science and innovation and on initiatives the international community can take to address data needs in this area.

CALL FOR PAPERS: Changing Patterns of Territorial Policy: Smart Specialization and Innovation in Europe

Seville, Spain, 29 – 30 September, 2016
The smart specialization approach is characterized by the identification of strategic areas for intervention based both on the analysis of the strengths and potential of the economy and on a process of entrepreneurial discovery with wide stakeholder involvement. It embraces a wide view of innovation that goes beyond research-oriented and technology-based activities, and requires a sound logic of intervention supported by effective monitoring mechanisms. This conference aims to take stock of the smart specialization experience and assess its current state of the art both in terms of conceptual developments and practical implementation. It offers to a limited number of participants from academia, European Institutions and territorial authorities, a unique opportunity to discuss these issues, to define the scope and main avenues for future research and policy analysis, and to address the challenges confronting policy makers and practitioners. The conference organizers are keen to attract papers that address the whole spectrum of topics, disciplines, and methodologies encompassed by the smart specialization approach, including contributions from all areas of regional analysis with a link to smart specialization.

5th European Colloquium on Culture, Creativity, and Economy

Seville, Spain, 6-8 October, 2016
In recent years, myriad links between culture, creativity and economic practice have become major topics of interdisciplinary debates. There is a growing consensus that the intersections between these spheres, and symbolic and culturally embedded values in particular, pervade the global economy. Culture is not confined to artistic practice or heritage, nor is creativity confined to networks of creative workers and entrepreneurs: culture and creativity are practiced by workers and individuals in a range of occupational, institutional and geographical settings. Indeed, far from being restricted to global cities and urban settings, a growing body of research highlights the presence and uniqueness of cultural and creative activities in suburban and rural settings and across the Global South. Moreover, digital technologies and processes of globalization continue to create, destroy and restructure the markets and conditions under which cultural production, intermediation and consumption are undertaken and experienced. These are in turn underpinned by a plurality of micro-spatialities and micro-processes through which the dynamics and spaces of culture and creativity emerge. Together, this underlines the importance of paying critical academic attention to the particularities of the different social, political, technological and cultural models that enable, hinder or displace the creative and cultural economy. For research and policy, there is a strong need to generate nuanced and tempered accounts which understand both the potentialities and limitations involved in the intersections of culture, creativity and economy. There is a need to pursue new research avenues that not only encompass but go beyond critical engagement with policies. For example, a “critical agenda on critical approaches” might unveil significant aporias and pitfalls in the ways we study the webs that tie culture, creativity and economy together. More than ever perhaps there is a need for critical and radical academic debate that addresses questions about the value and values inherent in culture and creativity; questions surrounding the ownership and marketization of culture and creativity; and the dynamics of cultural and creative spaces, production and work.

2016 Barcelona Workshop on Regional and Urban Economics

Barcelona, Spain, 27-28 October, 2016
The workshop will be focused on innovation and the spatial diffusion of knowledge with emphasis in collaboration networks. Its aim is to bring together researchers in urban and regional economics who are working in topics where the broad concept of the geography of innovation plays a fundamental role. Particular attention will be paid to papers dealing with the mechanisms and actors of knowledge diffusion (knowledge spillovers, networks, technological collaboration, and knowledge relatedness). Although the Workshop will focus on empirical papers, theoretical studies are also welcome.

CFP – Regional Studies Association Research Network on EU Cohesion Policy – ‘EU and the CITY’

Delft, Netherlands, 14 October, 2016
More than two thirds of EU citizens live in urban areas and that share is set to grow further. Cities are Europe’s core hubs for economic growth, innovation and employment. However, at the same time cities magnify some of the key challenges that Europe faces, from environment, social deprivation, quality of life, mobility, to integration of migrants and refugees. The importance of cities for Europe’s future is reflected in recent European strategies and agreements such as the Leipzig Charter on Sustainable European Cities, the Toledo Declaration or the more recent Urban Agenda for the EU, acknowledging the cities as focal points for economic development and as actors with a key responsibility in achieving territorial cohesion and the EU’s strategic goals. This in turn resulted in a pledge for boosting the urban dimension in EU cohesion policy as well as the development of national urban policies across all of the member states. Consequently, there is a growing number of instruments and initiatives as part of EU cohesion policy (e.g. JESSICA, Community-Led Local Development) and other initiatives (Adaptation Strategies for European Cities, European Urban Knowledge Network, URBACT, etc.) that support sustainable urban development and facilitate cooperation across municipal boundaries to promote development in metropolitan areas (e.g. Integrated Territorial Investment). Echoing these developments DG Regio recently changed its name to Directorate-General for Regional and Urban Policy. But what is behind those changes? What have been the effects of the new instruments? How have cities responded to them and who actually benefits from them? To what extent these new instruments contribute to Europe 2020 goals? To what extent and how has the EU influenced national urban policies and practices of urban practitioners on the ground? Does this new EU urban agenda stimulate new urban governance solutions? Do the EU instruments help to respond to the emerging challenges in the cities? These are some of the questions that this workshop in Delft aims to address. By bringing together scholars and practitioners working on this still under-researched but vitally important topic, the workshop seeks to offer a significant contribution to the scholarly debates and a forum for a critical reflection on the emerging EU urban policy.

2016 Regional Innovation Policies Conference

Cardiff Wales, November 3-4, 2016
Welcome to the 11th Regional Innovation Policies Conference 2016.  For more than a decade the Regional Innovation Policies Conference has been an essential date in the diaries of researchers, policy-makers and practitioners with an interest in the field of regional innovation, regional development and innovation policy.  The conference will feature keynote addresses and parallel sessions on a number of key themes arranged around the central topic of regional innovation, regional development and innovation policy.  The role of regions in innovation debates; the role of innovation in promoting the growth of innovation; the spatial distribution of innovation, and the role of regional policies in both stimulating and harnessing innovation are recurrent themes for the Regional Innovation Policies Conference.

The 2016 Technology Transfer Society Annual Conference

Phoenix, Arizona, 3-5 November, 2016
At least two decades of research show that new knowledge is a critical component of economic and social development.  Recent comprehensive reviews of the technology transfer literature conceptualize university technology transfer in terms of a patent-centric linear model—formal technology transfer—including technology disclosure, patent filing, and licensing.  This paradigm not only overlooks a diversity of practices by technology transfer offices, it also neglects other innovative practices or conceptualizations relating to the creation and exchange of new knowledge. To address the aforementioned gaps, the 2016 T2S Annual meeting will focus on alternative practices, policies, and conceptualizations of knowledge exchange that go beyond formal university technology transfer.  We are especially interested in empirical works that utilize frameworks and methodologies from a variety of disciplines and that utilize a variety of perspectives.

Regional Studies Association Winter Conference 2016 – New Pressures on Cities and Regions

London, UK, 24-25 November, 2016
This conference provides an intellectual and policy-relevant platform for scholars around the world to address the new and emerging challenges facing cities and regions. The global economic slowdown poses major concerns to many territories – through shortfalls in employment, household incomes, corporate profitability and tax revenues. The steel industry has been one of the hardest hit, forcing massive plant closures and redundancies from China to the UK. Austerity in public finances threatens the infrastructure required to lay the foundation for future growth and development. Economic uncertainties and uneven development also contribute to growing social unrest and new waves of international migration. Heightened regulation of the banks and other financial institutions is bound to have an impact on the funding of house-building and other real estate development, with uncertain consequences. Meanwhile the accelerating pace of technological change in many industries and occupations means different skills and capabilities are required of the workforce, causing painful adjustments for many communities. And looming concerns about climate change and accelerating environmental degradation complicate the task of urban and regional revitalization. The 2016 Winter Conference of the Regional Studies Association presents a timely opportunity to discuss these issues, to clarify the research imperatives, and to consider the challenges facing policymakers and practitioners. The conference organizers are keen to attract papers and sessions that address a broad research and policy agenda, including contributions from any discipline which can offer relevant insights into the urban-regional-global nexus.

European Cluster Conference

Brussels, Belgium, 30 November – 2 December, 2016
The fifth edition of the European Cluster Conference will be an inspiring event not to be missed by policy-makers from national and regional authorities involved or interested in cluster policies and cluster practitioners. The last edition of the European Cluster Conference in 2014 gathered over 340 cluster stakeholders from across Europe. As the 2016 edition is limited to 250 participants, early registration is advised – once possible; the registration platform is expected to be open in September. This year’s conference will focus on Cluster 4.0 – Shaping Smart Industries and include high-level plenary speeches, panel discussions and interactive sessions where participants will have the chance to share their experiences and challenges. Parallel discussions will take place in four priority areas related to industrial modernization, namely smart manufacturing and digital transformation, the circular economy, key enabling technologies, and creative and data-driven services. The parallel discussions will all cover the same key horizontal topics in different sessions. These include the role of clusters in boosting the innovation uptake and growth opportunities through strengthening cross-sectoral value chain linkages, strategic European partnering, international collaboration and skills towards shaping smart industries.

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This newsletter is prepared by Jen Nelles.
Project manager is David A. Wolfe.