Skip to main content

Underlying patterns in a current economic development model


Public officials may subjectively use a variety of elements, including economic characteristics and political considerations, in their selection of locations and allocation of resources for economic development. Policy capture is a method that determines the impartial weighting of a broad number of elements which influence these decision makers as they operationalize programs. Non-political criteria that may influence the selection of sites for local economic development provide the basis of the analysis conducted in this paper. Public officials at various levels of responsibility assessed the chances of creating jobs for disadvantaged residents (employment success) for a variety of hypothetical areas chosen as an ‘enterprise zone.’ Their responses give insight into policy decisions. There is a comparison of both individual responses and groups of respondents to the hypothetical data as well as to actual zones that were recently selected. Concluding remarks will discuss these results and the application of this method for enterprise zones and other policy analyses.

This is a preview of subscription content, access via your institution.


  • Bowman, E. H. (1963). ‘Consistency and Optimality in Managerial Decision Making,’ Management Science 9: 310–321.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brehmer, A. and B. Brehmer (1988). ‘What Have We Learned about Human Judgment from Thirty Years of Policy Capturing?’ in B. Brehmer and C. R. B. Joyce, eds. Human Judgment: The SJT View, Amsterdam, Elsevier: 75–114.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brehmer, B. and C. R. B. Joyce, eds. (1988). Human Judgment: The SJT View, Amsterdam: Elsevier.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brintnall, M., and R. E. Green (1988). ‘Comparing State Enterprise Zone Programs: Variations in Structure and Coverage,’ Economic Development Quarterly 2: 50–68.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brown, S. R. (1980). Political Subjectivity: Applications of Q Methodology in Political Science, New Haven: Yale University Press.

    Google Scholar 

  • Brunner, R. D., J. S. Fitch, J. Grassia, L. Kathlene and K. R. Hammond (1987). ‘Improving Data Utilization: The Case-Wise Alternative,’ Policy Sciences 20: 365–394.

    Google Scholar 

  • Cox, R. N. (1985). ‘Lessons from 30 Years of Science Parks in the U.S.A.,’ in J. M. Gibb, ed. Science Parks and Innovation Centers: Their Economic and Social Impact, Amsterdam: Elsevier.

    Google Scholar 

  • Dandridge, T. C. (December 1982). Development of Enterprise Zones: A Summary of Field Observation for HUD Program Development, Washington, D.C.: U.S. Housing and Urban Development Working Paper.

  • Dandridge, T. C., J. E. Oxendine, and S. C. Davidson (October 1981). The Impact of Enterprise Zones on Small and Minority Business, Washington, D.C.: National Technical Information Service NTIS # PB 82-155060.

  • Hahn, R. W. (1987). ‘Jobs and Environmental Quality: Some Implications for Instrument Choice,’ Policy Sciences 20: 289–306.

    Google Scholar 

  • Keeney, R. L. (1982). ‘Decision Analysis: An Overview,’ Operations Research 30: 803–838.

    Google Scholar 

  • Miesing, P. and T. C. Dandridge (1986). ‘Capturing Judgment Policies for Assessing Enterprise Zone Success Criteria,’ Decision Sciences 17: 50–64.

    Google Scholar 

  • Pennings, J. M. (1982). ‘The Urban Quality of Life and Entrepreneurship,’ Academy of Management Journal 25: 63–79.

    Google Scholar 

  • Vesper, K. H. (1980). New Venture Strategies, Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall.

    Google Scholar 

Download references

Author information

Authors and Affiliations


Additional information

We wish to acknowledge the extensive helpful suggestions of the editor and two anonymous reviewers.

Rights and permissions

Reprints and Permissions

About this article

Cite this article

Dandridge, T.C., Miesing, P. Underlying patterns in a current economic development model. Policy Sci 23, 231–249 (1990).

Download citation

  • Issue Date:

  • DOI:


  • Economic Development
  • Decision Maker
  • Economic Policy
  • Policy Decision
  • Individual Response