State governments in the U.S. have increasingly been promoting their business climate and products abroad. The motivation behind these efforts at "global promotion" might seem obvious to persons acquainted with export base theory. According to this theory, growth in a region's total economy-usually measured in either jobs or income -is a function of growth in its export or "basic" sectors; one builds an economy by building exports.
Export base theory has been a mainstay of economic development literature, and students of economic development theory probably would not be surprised to see state governments across the country engaging in global promotion. Thus, policy-makers in this area appear to be applying a well-established theory to the practical problem of enhancing economic development.