The central problem of local economic development, namely, how to guide declining cities toward renewed prosperity, remains stubbornly resistant to resolution, both theoretically and in practice. Despite a long history of theory and empirical research going back to the economic base model of the 1950s, and an even longer history of practice, dating to the 19th century, cities and states in the U.S. are still chasing jobs, industrial plants, and football teams, offering huge subsidies. They are bemused by nostrums, such as the creative class, which promise success, but rarely deliver. On the academic side, much excellent research has been done, for example on industrial clusters, and many books have set out the principal tools for local economic development that planners have employed. Still, success eludes most of the places that really need it.