Commentary on the news that's shaping West Michigan.


Dropping test scores warrant more discussion on early childhood development

August 31, 2018
The coming week marks the return of all Michigan students to schools, following the Labor Day weekend. Read More

Neighborhood coalition offers city commissioners important directives on affordable housing, inventory plans

August 24, 2018
Residents and members of varied Grand Rapids neighborhood associations took the initiative to spend several early spring and August days in meetings and study Housing Now! proposals the city commission has been eager to adopt, proposals the elected city officials think would address affordable housing availability. Read More

Thinking outside the box is essential in solving worker shortage

August 17, 2018
The Business Journal has noted for more than a year the ever-worsening talent and recruitment shortages in the region (and state). Read More

Kent County board should be encouraged to find agreement on committing to sustainable business park instead of landfills

August 10, 2018
In September, the Kent County Board of Commissioners will begin work sessions on the sustainable business park master plan and hopes to attract companies that can convert recovered material into new products — including combined heat and power plants. Read More

HireReach sets bar for employment practices

August 3, 2018
The Business Journal story reporting on changes in hiring practices at Mercy Health is nothing short of riveting for its success in eliminating bias in the selection and training process. President Bill Manns initiated the implementation of a new process five years ago to address diversity and turnover. Read More

City of Grand Rapids’ economic ‘help’ for ‘business’ is confounding

July 27, 2018
The city of Grand Rapids’ Economic Development Corporation “approved two agreements to help boost minority business development” in the “greater Grand Rapids area.” Read More

Income inequality continues to burden Michigan

July 20, 2018
The nonprofit think tank Economic Policy Institute last week released an updated report on income equality levels across the country, in all states, all counties and 916 metropolitan areas. Read More

Muskegon partners muscling economic stability

July 13, 2018
Earlier this year, the Business Journal recognized Muskegon development as the top 2017 economic development news and as Grand Rapids Business Journal Newsmaker of the Year, recognizing more than $1 billion in investments in public spaces, new building, renovation and business expansions. Read More

Solving workforce issues takes more than educated guesses

July 6, 2018
The Business Journal has reported this month on more than four initiatives to resolve the crisis in Michigan education, both local and statewide. Read More

ArtPrize symbolizes and rewards a design-centric business community with economic gains

June 29, 2018
The Business Journal this week reports on the domino economic impact of the decision to make ArtPrize a biannual event, but additional reporting reflects the overall economic opportunity of a labor force steeped in design-centric practices. Read More