Most of us still live and work in the Second Frontier, but as recognized by the Governor, a Third Frontier is rapidly emerging, a frontier based on knowledge. Ohio's new focus meshes perfectly with our own economic development efforts. Far from being opportunistic, regular readers of this column know that the CIC began its own "Third Frontier" knowledge-based economic development (KBED) initiative over two years ago. We define knowledge-based business as business that (a) utilizes its employees' knowledge, not their physical labor, (b) employs a high number of degree holders, whether they are four-year college degrees or certification in other specialized knowledge areas such as software development, (c) employs workers who are skilled and receive high wages and (d) constantly innovates.
The Tuscarawas KBED effort has developed into an active collaboration of the CIC, county government, Kent State University Tuscarawas, Buckeye Career Center and others. Three goals are being addressed: promoting access to broadband data services, fostering technology awareness and establishing a technology park in the county.
"Will we accept the challenge to be the forefathers of the Information Age? Or will we engage in the simple and comfortable approach to parochial politics, turf protection, and the preservation of the status quo. The opportunity is ours. Let us seize it"
- Virginia Governor Jim Gilmore