DC Policy Center Launches Alice M. Rivlin Initiative for Economic Policy and Competitiveness


WASHINGTON DC– Today, the DC Policy Center announced the launch of the Alice M. Rivlin Initiative for Economic Policy and Competitiveness. The Rivlin Initiative will undertake in-depth research examining the competitiveness of the District of Columbia and explore policies that can make the city more attractive and support inclusive economic growth. Named after the late Dr. Alice M. Rivlin – a tireless champion for the District of Columbia, accomplished public servant, and trailblazer for women – the Rivlin Initiative will explore the roots of economic success, as well as future opportunities and constraints.

During its first two years, the Rivlin Initiative will examine the factors that have contributed to the district’s growth and how regional economic dynamics have shaped the district’s competitive position. Researchers will also explore (i) how the pandemic is shaping demographic and economic trends for urban localities like the District, (ii) what these trends mean for DC as an urban center of a large metropolitan area, (iii) what risks and opportunities exist that can shape the future trajectory of the city, and (iv) what policies can help – or hinder – a thriving local economy.

“The work of the Rivlin Initiative will be the first in-depth and objective assessment of the district’s competitive position and how that position shapes the city’s true potential for sustained economic growth,” said Charles (Sandy) Wilkes, Chairman of the DC Policy Center Board of Trustees. “Our goal is to assess the factors that make the District a welcoming place for all residents, workers and businesses, so that it can be an even more inclusive, diverse and prosperous city.”

“Alice was a dear friend and a strong supporter of DC. She understood that we needed a vibrant economy to support the range of government services the city has to offer. It is a fitting tribute that the DC Policy Center, originally incubated at the Federal City Council, is celebrating its fifth anniversary with the launch of such a significant initiative named in its honor,” said Anthony A. WilliamsChief Executive of the Federal City Council and former Mayor of the District of Columbia.

AnchorFlagship Research for the Alice M. Rivlin Initiative

Report on remote work and its potential impacts on the District of Columbia

Expected delivery: April 2022

This research will identify the links between commuter activity and district financial strength, as well as assess potential tax impacts in various remote and hybrid work scenarios. This research will review the growing literature on work from home trends and the impact of these trends on urban downtowns. Using publicly available data on population, jobs, rents, housing prices, and tax base, this research will uncover the potential tax implications of extended remote work.

Regional enterprise survey, part I

Expected delivery: June 2022

We seek to uncover business location considerations in the region and decipher what really drives businesses to choose one jurisdiction over another. The background knowledge uncovered by the survey will then help advance additional research topics, allowing the DC Policy Center to dig deeper into the findings.

Regional business survey, part II

Expected delivery: December 2022

We will identify the considerations for siting commercial establishments in the region through the different phases of their life. We will then study the impact of local politics and other economic, demographic and external considerations that shape location decisions. The research will identify the terms that businesses of various types find most favorable. It will also examine what drives a business to move into or out of the District of Columbia.

Regional Business Migration and Growth Trends Report

Expected delivery: January 2023

Our goal is to find out which jurisdictions have attracted or created more business, why, and what this means for the District of Columbia. The research will examine whether trends in business creation and migration have changed over time, and whether these trends vary by industry, type of establishment, size or income.

Regional Labor Dynamics Report

Expected delivery: January 2023

We will strive to understand where the region’s workforce lives and why. This research will examine labor force participation and migration trends in the region, why and where workers are moving, how this contributes to regional and intergovernmental competitiveness, and what these trends mean for the future of the District of Columbia.

“The DC Policy Center’s mission is to provide decision makers with factual, unbiased, and reliable research and analysis to help develop policies that ensure a vibrant local economy that can maximize opportunities for District residents, workers, and businesses. of Columbia” mentioned Yesim Sayin Taylor, Executive Director of the Policy Center. “We believe that with thoughtful policies, economic growth can provide the fastest path to shared prosperity. The Rivlin Initiative will work on the factors that contribute to district growth and develop policy proposals that can help ensure vibrant and inclusive growth. »

District decision makers have given the Rivlin Initiative a warm welcome.

“When I took office, Alice challenged me to think of new and better ways to serve residents and get the most out of taxpayers’ money. During her years of public service, she has helped move our city onto a stronger and more prosperous path. Now, at this critical time for our city, it’s only fitting that the Rivlin Initiative helps guide and support our next big comeback,” said Muriel BowserMayor of the District of Columbia.

Chairman of the DC Council, Phil Mendelson, said, “Since its inception five years ago, the DC Policy Center has been a trusted resource on important public policy issues. The District’s competitive advantage as the region’s economic center of gravity is crucial. As we emerge from the pandemic, city policy must reflect a sense of urgency. It is impressive that the DC Policy Center is focusing on this area of ​​research.

The DC Policy Center is supported by individuals, state and local foundations, and a cross section of leading industries in the district, including banking, construction, real estate and development, hospitals, hotels and restaurants, transportation and utilities, sports and entertainment, wholesalers, law and investment firms. The Rivlin Initiative was started with a generous donation from the Quadrangle Development Corporation.

The Alice M. Rivlin Initiative’s concept note outlines its two-year research program, which will be guided by an advisory committee of nationally recognized academics and policy experts. Bailey McConnell, who joined the DC Policy Center in June 2021, will serve as research director.


About the DC Policy Center

Established in 2016, the DC Policy Center arms policymakers with factual, unbiased, and trusted research and analysis to help create a vibrant local economy that can maximize opportunities for District of Columbia residents, workers, and businesses. Learn more about dcpolicycenter.org.


Aimee Custis, Director of External Affairs
DC Policy Center
(202) 431-7185 (cell)
[email protected]