The Power of Ideas

Research and National Conferences

In order to better understand broad workplace trends that impact businesses in Fairfax County and across the country, the FCEDA periodically commissions national polls and presents national conferences.

Here you will find background information on the results of our research and important conferences that brought some of the world's best known visionaries and business people together to discuss urbanization, creativity and more.

AUGUST 2010—Fairfax County EDA survey indicates one in two would consider changing jobs or moving to a community that offers more
Conducted in mid-2010, this national survey found that, if they could find the same job in a community that they thought offered a higher quality of life, almost half (43 percent) of working Americans would move. The poll also found that many workers had already looked. About one in four (23 percent) of those surveyed say that within the past five years they sought employment in areas that they perceive to have a better quality of life. Almost two in five (38 percent) of those surveyed said they live where they do primarily because of their job. To learn more about this survey, see the complete release.

MAY 2009—Fairfax County EDA Survey: Suburbanites want urban amenities
Almost 60 years after the beginning of the American migration of families and jobs to the suburbs, many of today’s suburban workers and residents confess to missing many of the characteristics of more urban environments. According to a 2009 national survey, more than half of those living in suburbs, along with almost half of workers who work in the suburbs, said they wanted more public transportation, more housing options, greater access to useable green space or a better variety of job opportunities – typical features of cities. What’s more, the desire for these urban attributes is so great, the survey found, that one half of those yearning for them would consider changing jobs or moving to a community that has more to offer. The full release is available here.

APRIL 2009—“The New Urban Economic Model: The Transformation of Fairfax County”
“The New Urban Economic Model: The Transformation of Fairfax County” was held in June, 2009 at the Hilton McLean Tysons Corner and featured keynote addresses by Urban Land Institute Senior Resident Fellow (and former Indianapolis mayor) William Hudnut and Brookings Institution urban policy scholar Anthony Downs. The Fairfax County Economic Development Authority (FCEDA) presented the conference. To learn more about what topics were featured, see the release.

NOVEMBER 2008—Fairfax County EDA survey indicates almost 40 percent of American workers would consider switching jobs to employer with greater commitment to workplace technology
An overwhelming majority of U.S. workers place a high value on technology in the workplace, so much so that almost 40 percent of employees across the labor force would consider changing jobs to work for an organization that is more committed to providing access to and training in the latest technology.

In a 2008 national survey, four in five workers said access to technology is important to their capacity to be creative (78 percent) and productive (80 percent) at work.  A similar percentage (80%) said that such technology gives their employer an edge in the marketplace. See the full release

OCTOBER 2007—National Conference on the Creative Economy
The 2007 National Conference on the Creative Economy featured Richard Florida, Thomas Friedman and Alvin Toffler delivering the keynote presentations. FORTUNE columnist Anne Fisher and CNN’s Frank Sesno also lead panel discussions. The Fairfax County EDA presented the conference. Learn more here.

SEPTEMBER 2007—Survey Points to "Creativity Gap" in U.S. Workplace
At a time when many economists and futurists were pointing to creativity and innovation as one of the cornerstones of U.S. competitiveness, a 2007 survey found that, while an overwhelming majority of American workers believe they are instinctively creative, fewer than two in three think they are tapping their creative capacities on the job. The survey found that 88 percent of U.S. workers consider themselves creative. But when it comes to creativity in the workplace, just 63 percent said their positions were creative, and a comparable 61 percent thought similarly about the companies for which they work. See more of the results here.