Gallery » Expert discusses how to attract Young and Restless

Joseph Cortright, author of Young and Restless, speaks during a Keynote Breakfast address at LeaderCon 07 put on by the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce.
Photo Credit: Jesse Johnston

Attracting young, mobile, highly educated workers to Winnipeg was the focus of the keynote speech this morning at the Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce's Leadercon 07 conference.

American economist Joseph Cortright, who has written about the factors that cause the 25 to 34 age group to migrate from one city to another, spoke to a business audience about ways to stem the brain drain.

With baby boomers set to retire, the number of women in the workforce at a plateau, and no significant increase foreseen in college attainability, there is a major workforce shortage on the horizon for North America, Cortright says.

According to Cortright's research, by a two-to-one margin, people choose where they would like to live and then try to find work, rather than the opposite.

Cities that are welcoming to new and diverse people and ideas, that strive to be the best at something, and take risks to achieve their goals are the most attractive, says Cortright.

Another finding is that the "Creative Class" is increasing interested in living within three miles of a city's central business district.

Creating vibrant urban neighbourhoods is a major magnet for the types of young professionals who will stay permanently in a city and help its economy grow.


John Gault » May 1st 2007, 11:00


Let's see Winnipeg, three miles from city centre...I know let's put a hog plant! There you go ...that will attract that educated youth!

Jack Rach » May 1st 2007, 11:13


The hog plant is dead. Get over it.

John Gault » May 1st 2007, 11:24


The plant is not the point. My point is if the City really is serious about this issue it has to do much better planning and investing. Yes it seems the plant is dead but once the election is over will the politicians fall back to the quick cash grab of certain industries. If it was not for the public organising it would have went through. People forget fast so I will still cry pig plant when I see a dumb idea. It has a nice ring to it.

Thank you for reading my comment. I was beginning to think I was being ignored.

Scott Bones » May 1st 2007, 12:05


Coolness factor. The years of Jokes of “winterpeg' and the like are finally having an effect. If the City could figure out how to Hip again I am sure other companies would look to Winnipeg.

Steve C » May 1st 2007, 14:53


Young people want to live downtown? Really? They couldn't have just checked to see who was buying up condos in the exchange? If this is news to anyone on city council, we're really in trouble.

Cory B » May 1st 2007, 15:04


Every time I see a news conference about a downtown condo it always seems to be empty nesters that are moving in. Also with the price of most of those condos it would be difficult for the young people the city is hoping to attractto afford one.

Steve C » May 1st 2007, 15:22


The waterfront condos are being bought up by older people, the ones in the exchange are mainly people in their late 20s to mid 30s (the exchange is a little too "downtownish" for the older folks). Condo prices are reflective of supply and demand. There is high demand for condos in that area right now so prices have skyrocketed (at least doubled) from what they were a few years ago.

If you go check out new places like Fairchild, they're being almost exclusively bought by young people who work downtown. I checked out Sky condos a few weeks ago and it was a pretty good split between older and younger people. Housing prices in general have gone way up in the city so you can't really find anything good for less than 200k these days. Most of the condo developments have a few places that are between 300k and 500k but the majority of the units are in the 180k-230k range, which is what you need to pay for a house, only it's in an area that actually interests people.

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Avi Saper

  • 35 years old
  • Winnipeg, Manitoba, Canada
  • User since Mar 2nd 2007, 14:56

RSS Docket » LeaderCon

Winnipeg Chamber of Commerce hosts LeaderCon 07 to discuss keeping young people in Manitoba.

Video » Watch youth panel at LeaderCon

A panel made up of young people discusses the challenges of attracting young professionals to Manitoba.