CLEVELAND, Ohio — Greater Cleveland’s largest players in economic development, working together under the Cleveland Innovation Project, on Tuesday outlined a set of short-term goals to hit on the way to establishing the area as a Midwest leader for technology-led growth by 2030.
The goals for 2022 include advancing smart manufacturing, furthering health innovation and growing the local talent pool.
Launched in 2019, the Project was initiated by the Greater Cleveland Partnership, Team NEO, Jumpstart, Fund for Our Economic Future and the Cleveland Foundation. It has since brought on over a hundred other partners.
Baiju Shah, president and CEO of the GCP, said talks about the initiative started in 2018 when leaders realized Cleveland was falling behind peer cities in the Midwest. Under the Project, he and other leaders say organizations are collaborating in ways they haven’t before.
“Innovation” is a popular word used to brand many different projects around Cleveland, but the CIP is more of a strategy than a physical thing. Shah and other leaders described it as a way to get Greater Cleveland’s many organizations and projects all moving toward the same goals.
Another way to think about it, Bethia Burke of the Fund for Out Economic Future said, is like fly paper. There’s a lot of ideas, innovations and goals whizzing around. The CIP is meant to stick them together and move them forward in a collaborative way.