Workforce Development & Economic Policy

Governors are working to expand economic opportunity and advance the nation’s global competitiveness by developing the skilled workforce and economic environment required for individuals, businesses and communities to thrive.

As the chief executive officers of their states, Governors set strategic priorities to align workforce and economic development activities to build a shared vision of societal and economic well-being. The NGA Workforce Development & Economic Policy program supports Governors and their appointees in developing and executing on these priorities.

Featured Initiatives 

NGA Workforce Development Technical Assistance Program

NGA provides advisors and other Governor-appointed state workforce system leaders with technical assistance on a broad range of workforce development policy issues through policy memoranda; in-state site visits and presentations, and facilitated connections with subject matter experts. The team also holds biannual convenings and monthly briefings and issues a weekly newsletter.


Workforce Strategic Planning Collaborative

The NGA Center’s joint project with the U.S. Department of Labor supports Governors and their advisors as they develop and implement their federally required four-year strategic plans for workforce development. Technical assistance offerings include an emphasis on implementation of federal investments that passed during the 117th Congress, namely the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, CHIPS and Science Act, and Inflation Reduction Act.


NGA Economic Policy Advisors and Economic Policy Technical Assistance

NGA provides Governor-appointed state economic development leaders and advisors with highly responsive and customized best practice research, strategic planning facilitation, timely information from federal partners and subject matter experts, and other support on a broad range of economic policy priorities. This includes an upcoming virtual event series as well as a bi-weekly newsletter.

Meet The Team


Focus Areas

  • Apprenticeship and youth apprenticeship
  • Sector-focused workforce and economic development strategies
  • Workforce development financing, governance, and innovation
  • Outdoor recreation & economic development  
  • Service-to-career pathways and public sector employment
  • IIJA, CHIPS and IRA implementation Future of work, digital transformation and digital skills
  • Disability inclusive workforce policy

Services Available

  • Strategic planning facilitation and best practice guidance on workforce and economic development topics or initiatives
  • Strategic guidance, feedback and meeting facilitation services for Governor-appointed state workforce development boards
  • Convenings for workforce and economic development advisors and state leaders on emerging issues
  • Regular newsletters for state workforce and economic development leaders
  • Customized research briefs and best practice presentations upon request

Workforce Development Library

Skills-Based Hiring in the Public Sector

Skills-Based Hiring in the Public Sector

Over the past year and a half, Governors in more than a dozen states have taken intentional steps to remove barriers to employment in the public sector by removing unnecessary ...
Leveraging Early Childhood Apprenticeships to Support the Early Care and Education Workforce

Leveraging Early Childhood Apprenticeships to Support the Early Care and Education Workforce

On January 17, 2024, the National Governors Association Children & Families team hosted the monthly Human Services Policy Advisors Institute on supporting the ECE workforce through early childhood apprenticeships. Challenges ...
NGA Convenes Ten States to Explore Service as a Pathway to Economic Opportunity

NGA Convenes Ten States to Explore Service as a Pathway to Economic Opportunity

As Governors implement their workforce development policy agendas in the face of labor shortages in nearly every sector of the economy, state and national service programs offer a promising strategy ...
Service-To-Career Pathways

Service-To-Career Pathways

Governors across the country are navigating rapidly evolving labor force trends – worker shortages in nearly every sector of the economy, skills gaps created by new technologies, and increased cost ...
Disability Inclusive Workforce Policy Learning Collaborative

Disability Inclusive Workforce Policy Learning Collaborative

As Governors work to confront an extremely tight labor market, efforts to reduce barriers to workforce participation are increasingly critical for developing a skilled workforce and filling in-demand jobs. This ...
Six States Selected to Participate in NGA Disability Inclusive Workforce Policy Learning Collaborative  

Six States Selected to Participate in NGA Disability Inclusive Workforce Policy Learning Collaborative  

WASHINGTON – Maryland, Minnesota, New York, North Dakota, Ohio, and Vermont have been selected to participate in the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices (NGA Center) Disability Inclusive Workforce Policy ...
A Best Practices Dozen – Publications 2023

A Best Practices Dozen – Publications 2023

As we welcome a new year, it is natural to reflect on the year that has passed. In the realm of information dissemination, this act of reflection takes on particular ...
Leveraging the 2024–2027 Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Planning Period to Capitalize on Investment Passed in the 117th Congress: Opportunities for Governors and State Workforce Development Boards

Leveraging the 2024–2027 Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act Planning Period to Capitalize on Investment Passed in the 117th Congress: Opportunities for Governors and State Workforce Development Boards

The purpose of this publication is to provide Governors and state workforce development boards with a menu of actionable steps they can take to play a proactive role in implementing ...
Governors Encouraged by CHIPS Selection, Call for Acceleration of Awards to Advance American Competitiveness

Governors Encouraged by CHIPS Selection, Call for Acceleration of Awards to Advance American Competitiveness

WASHINGTON – Today, National Governors Association Chair Governor Spencer Cox of Utah and Vice Chair Governor Jared Polis of Colorado released the following statement following the U.S. Department of Commerce’s selection ...

Economic Policy Library

Improving Housing Availability and Affordability

Improving Housing Availability and Affordability

Governors are applying a multifaceted approach to lower housing costs by increasing funding for affordable housing, rethinking land use regulations, streamlining the permitting process and exploring housing innovations. Housing is ...
Governors Urge Congress to Pass Tax Measures

Governors Urge Congress to Pass Tax Measures

WASHINGTON – Today, National Governors Association Chair Governor Spencer Cox of Utah and Vice Chair Governor Jared Polis of Colorado released the following statement after the introduction and House committee ...
Mitigating AI Risks in State Government 

Mitigating AI Risks in State Government 

State officials are leading the way to identify and tackle AI risks – from misinformation to data privacy concerns. In a December 2023 installment of an ongoing webinar series, the ...
Leveraging Outdoor Assets in the Travel, Tourism, and Outdoor Recreation Sectors

Leveraging Outdoor Assets in the Travel, Tourism, and Outdoor Recreation Sectors

On Wednesday, December 13th NGA hosted its fourth and final webinar in a four-part series highlighting innovative and replicable projects that are funded by the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Travel, ...
Governors Encouraged by CHIPS Selection, Call for Acceleration of Awards to Advance American Competitiveness

Governors Encouraged by CHIPS Selection, Call for Acceleration of Awards to Advance American Competitiveness

WASHINGTON – Today, National Governors Association Chair Governor Spencer Cox of Utah and Vice Chair Governor Jared Polis of Colorado released the following statement following the U.S. Department of Commerce’s selection ...
Service as a Pathway to Economic Opportunity: A Roadmap for Governors

Service as a Pathway to Economic Opportunity: A Roadmap for Governors

This roadmap lays out five key elements with related policy options for Governors to consider as they develop and execute a vision for service-to-career pathways in their states (Download) Background ...
Governors Share Federal Funding Concerns to House Speaker

Governors Share Federal Funding Concerns to House Speaker

NGA Chair Utah Governor Spencer Cox and Vice Chair Colorado Governor Jared Polis wrote a letter to House Speaker Mike Johnson urging the House and Senate to work together to ...
Housing

Housing

Housing is a basic necessity. Yet shortages and skyrocketing costs are putting it out of reach for more and more Americans. Driven by high interest rates and low supply, home ...
Governors’ Responses to Challenges in Housing Availability and Affordability

Governors’ Responses to Challenges in Housing Availability and Affordability

Every state is impacted by the national housing shortage. Housing prices have soared. Inflation has driven interest rates higher, increasing monthly mortgage costs and almost doubling the household income needed ...