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L.A. County Leads in Design-Related Jobs

May 03, 2000|Indraneel Sur

More people are employed in several design-related fields in Los Angeles County than in five other major U.S. metropolitan areas, the county's economic development agency said in a study being released today. Although the county is recognized as the national leader in film and television production, its design-intensive apparel, automobile, furniture, toy and technology sectors are often overlooked by such businesses looking to relocate, said Jack Kyser, chief economist at the Los Angeles Economic Development Corp., who produced the study. More people work in these fields in L.A. County than in the metropolitan areas of New York, Chicago, San Francisco, Dallas-Fort Worth or Atlanta, according to Commerce Department and Census Bureau data for 1997, the most recent year available, the study concluded. Local firms in what the study calls "creative industries" employed nearly 1 million and generated nearly $122 billion in revenue last year. The results will be used as part of a promotional campaign being launched today to draw design-related businesses to the region. The study did not include the Detroit area, or Santa Clara County, home of Silicon Valley. How economists define "creative" industries can be a matter of debate, said Martin Krieger, a professor of planning at USC. "Some of the most-creative people we have are school teachers," Krieger said. "What about them?"

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