November 25, 2012

NY's big vision paying off with jobs

By: Alain E. Kaloyeros


To the Editor:

Last Sunday's commentary '''Big' isn't enough to sell New York to business'' was hardly germane to the conversation we should be having about New York's successes under the visionary leadership of Gov. Andrew Cuomo in building a globally competitive 21st century innovation economy.

With all due respect to what may or may not be happening in Indiana, New York's size, geographic distribution, demographic diversity and world-class network of public and private higher education is being harnessed by the governor to establish a dominant nanotechnology sector that is becoming the envy of most countries, let alone the 50 states.

By leveraging seed state investment in the College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering (CNSE) at the University of Albany, the governor has attracted the top semiconductor corporations to New York, with a collective investment of nearly $5 billion and the creation and retention of over 5,000 high-tech jobs. That is big. By naming the Central New York Regional Economic Development Council as Best Plan Awardee, the governor secured more than $100 million for the region. That is big. And when President Barack Obama was hosted by the governor at the CNSE in Upstate New York, and the president proclaimed that he wanted ''what was happening in Albany to happen in cities across America,'' (one presumes that would include Indiana), that too was big.

Big does happen in New York, and in the months and years ahead it will only get bigger. More companies and the coveted high-paying jobs that they offer will be coming to New York because this state has presented a clear vision for where it wants to be and a strategy to get there.

We can agree to disagree about the impact of an advertising component of a well-thought out, comprehensive statewide economic development strategy, which for the record includes television and print placement in national and international venues. But one cannot ignore the fact that the advertisement campaign is having the intended effect across the 50 states, the European Union and the Pacific Rim.

Given the results we have seen in just 22 months of Gov. Cuomo's term, the author of your commentary would be well suited to emulate New York's strategy rather than criticize it.

Alain E. Kaloyeros is professor, senior vice president and CEO of College of Nanoscale Science and Engineering at the University of Albany.