Rick Harper

Rick Harper

Economy

Local tourism rebounds after Great Recession

Leisure and hospitality has been the fastest-growing sector in the Pensacola economy for the last several years. This can be seen both in employment growth and in increased retail sales. Read full story

Commentary

Commuters show the ties that bind Escambia, Santa Rosa counties.

UWF's Rick Harper notes Escambia, Santa Rosa are part of an integrated whole. The best economic progress we could make would be to all rise together. Read full story

Studer Community Institute

Dashboard points to sustainable progress

Progress is slow,but sustainable, according to data in the Studer Community Institute's Pensacola Metro Dashboard, says Dr. Rick Harper. Read full story

Economy

Wage growth remains sluggish in Northwest Florida

Slow wage growth locally linked to Florida-specific impacts of recession, type of job growth that has led our state out of the recession, says Rick Harper. Read full story

Economy

Employment outlook good in Panhandle, South Alabama communities

Pensacola has had strong job growth over the last couple of years, but this should be no surprise. Like most cities in Florida, Pensacola was hard hit by the housing slowdown that was at the heart of the Great Recession. Simply getting back to the pre-recession jobs peak will require another year. Read full story

Economy

Growth in tourism industry part of larger trend toward service-sector jobs

Tourism looks healthy and is an engine that pulls along employment – particularly in leisure and hospitality, and in wholesale and retail trade, but also in other sectors. Read full story

Education

Hiring outlook brightening for new college grads

May is college graduation season, and today’s job market entrants are seeing steadily improving prospects. Read full story

Economy

Economist recognized for ground-breaking work in education

The John Bates Clark Medal is awarded by the American Economic Association the best economist working in America who is under age 40. There have been 37 winners since it was initiated in 1947. Paul Samuelson won the first medal, and Milton Friedman won it in 1951. Read full story

Education

Focus on teacher quality the single best thing we could do for education

Great teachers change students’ lives for the better. Almost all of us know someone who can tell the tale of a student inspired, and a life changed, by a great teacher. Read full story

Education

Education funding must be tied to value added by schools, teachers

What really matters about school is how much value a student gets out of the course of study. Read full story

Education

State report claims UWF grads earn less, but closer look at data suggests otherwise

In 2012, Gov. Rick Scott signed a law requiring that an Economic Security Report be published annually by Florida’s Department of Economic Opportunity. Read full story

Economy

Cost of flying out of Pensacola increasing faster than state average

We worked for years to bring Southwest Airlines to Pensacola. While travel volume has increased in recent years, Southwest’s eventual arrival hasn’t been enough to keep airfares low. Read full story