Talking Headways Podcast: Metro Areas — True Laboratories of Democracy

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This week I’m joined by Bruce Katz, vice president of the Brookings Institution and founder of its Metropolitan Policy Program. We chat about devolution in Great Britain –the idea of moving power away from national bureaucracies and towards metropolitan governance — and the power of metropolitan areas around the world.

There is much that America could learn from Britain’s move towards more metropolitan control. States with several metro areas could follow the UK example by moving more power to local authorities, and cities already may have more power than they realize. We also talk about what mayors want from federal policy and what kind of leaders and coalitions are needed in U.S. regions to make change.

“For folks who care about transit, intercity rail, or infrastructure,” says Bruce, “the next decade is going to be a tough decade for the U.S. in particular, because so much of the funding is going to be shifted to entitlement programs. The U.S. is becoming a health care company with an army.”

Take a listen and — extra bonus — hear what Bruce thinks of the coming year of presidential politics.

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