Ryan Donahue is an expert in urban and regional economic development strategy. His work focuses on helping coalitions of regional organizations develop and implement strategies to generate inclusive and sustainable growth. As both an independent consultant and through his work at Brookings Metro, Donahue has advised more than 40 organizations, including economic development organizations, city and state agencies, community organizations, philanthropies, CEO groups, and industry organizations.
Donahue’s experience includes applied research and strategy projects in areas such as inclusive growth, industry cluster development, innovation and entrepreneurship, global trade and investment, metrics and indicators, and the structure of regional economic development systems. Donahue has helped design and manage several major Brookings Metro engagements, including the Birmingham Prosperity Partnership, the Inclusive Economic Development Lab, and the Global Cities Exchange. These projects have shaped the work of dozens of economic development organizations and catalyzed new partnerships with community development and workforce development entities.
Donahue has co-authored numerous Brookings reports that synthesize lessons from these engagements and highlight emerging practices from across the U.S. These include “Rewiring Systems to Rebuild Local Economies”, “Rethinking Cluster Initiatives,” and “Committing to Inclusive Growth”.
Previously, Donahue was Research Director at the Trust for Public Land. Donahue holds a B.A. in International Political Economy and French from the University of Puget Sound, and lives in the Seattle area with his wife and two young children.