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Anybody use IMPLAN?

vaughan

Cyburbian
Messages
335
Points
11
Does anyone out there do input/output analysis using IMPLAN? I'm being suckered into an input/output analysis of recreational use vs oil and gas vs grazing by some ag econ extension agents here at the university, and, while I think its fascinating, I have to wonder (as I bend my brain trying to understand mathematical modeling) whether its a once-in-a-lifetime thing. Any of you economic developers/analysts use the IMPLAN software? If not, what's the general strategy for fiscal impact analysis that people use out there?
 

Cardinal

Cyburbian
Messages
10,080
Points
34
It really depends on the situation, but frankly, most of it is very simplified. More complex projects, such as TIF districts, get a certain level of analysis. The rest are simply "done." What it really boils down to is that the measures of a comprehensive analysis are often difficult or impossible to quantify. Bias tends to be injected into the analysis in so many ways that it is not worth reading. Even ignoring that, the programs that are available also tend to be written with urban or suburban areas in mind, and are not really worth much in rural or small town settings.
 

Lee Nellis

Cyburbian
Messages
1,371
Points
29
The U of Wyoming, certain other state universities, and the Forest Service have been worshipping input-output analysis since the mid-1970's. It has theoretical appeal, but to make a model work accurately requires an incredible and practically impossible level of research. What always happens instead is a little research and a lot of assumptions.

People will learn more, and be willing to take more action based on that learning, by working with simpler, more understandable, and generally more accurate basic data and their own common sense understanding of local assets and how they relate. If someone gives you some IMPLAN numbers, be extremely inquisitive about the assumptions!
 
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