New Economy Initiative Takes ‘Street Level’ Approach to Detroit's Entrepreneurial Hubs


tStarting today, the New Economy Initiative in Detroit is taking a street-level approach to better connect with the people and organizations it serves by sending its employees to various co-working and shared spaces in Detroit over the next two to three years.

tCalled NEI Street Level, the program aims to provide the nonprofit with a better understanding of the real, everyday challenges and needs of metro Detroit’s entrepreneur community and help better unite them through its work.

t“We are very intentionally joining our region’s bourgeoning entrepreneurial movement by physically planting ourselves right in the middle of it,” says David O. Egner, executive director of the nonprofit New Economy Initiative. “Our hope is that, by the sheer nature of our work, we can help foster connections that accelerate growth, and provide more access for all of our varied populations to the activities driving prosperity.”

tFor a few days each week, the organization’s employees will work within local co-working spaces, which offer a shared working environment for freelancers, remote workers, small businesses, and startups to work on projects, grow their businesses, share resources, and network. They will share updates on their experiences, connections, and outcomes through blog posts at

tBy 2020 more than 40 percent of American’s workforce will be a freelance position in one form or another, so the spaces that foster those relationships will be more important than ever, Egner says.

tFrom Oct. 20-24, the organization will also sponsor the second annual Detroit Co-Working Week, which will include a number of presentations and open houses throughout many of Detroit’s co-working and shared spaces.