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Supporting Sector Strategies in the South

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This white paper documents the support by Southern states for industry sector-focused ("sector") workforce and economic development initiatives, identifies opportunities for states' adoption of sector strategies and barriers they face, and describes actions and resources that can help states organize workforce and economic development around industry sectors. It seeks to encourage and support the adoption of "sector-friendly" policies at the state level, such as directing health and human services, workforce, education, and economic development resources towards industry-targeted training for low-income, low-skill individuals. It is issued in the context of high interest in sector initiatives among leaders across the region, many of whom have embraced sector initiatives as a means of creating opportunities for upward mobility among low-wage, low-skill workers while providing companies with the workers they need to thrive in a knowledge economy.