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

Innovative Workforce Development Programs for the Travel, Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Sectors

Innovative Workforce Development Programs for the Travel, Tourism and Outdoor Recreation Sectors

The National Governors Association Center for Best Practices held a webinar on Thursday, June 22, 1:00-2:00 EST for members of our Economic Development and Outdoor Recreation Networks to learn about ...
Governors Leading on Skills-Based Hiring to Open Opportunity Pathways

Governors Leading on Skills-Based Hiring to Open Opportunity Pathways

Skills-based hiring is a method of recruiting employees that prioritizes a candidate's competencies over more "traditional" qualifications like degrees. This hiring strategy can remove barriers that currently screen out qualified ...
How Governors Are Addressing Housing Access and Affordability and the Connection to Workforce Success

How Governors Are Addressing Housing Access and Affordability and the Connection to Workforce Success

Governors are increasingly confronting both workforce and housing shortages in a whole of government, complementary manner to not only ensure economic mobility but also to make sure businesses reach their ...
Governors Lead the Way on Behavioral Health Workforce Needs

Governors Lead the Way on Behavioral Health Workforce Needs

New research from the National Council for Mental Wellbeing shows that 83% of the behavioral health workforce believes providers will not be able to meet the demand for mental health ...
Governors Lead on Solutions to Improve Mental Health in the Workplace

Governors Lead on Solutions to Improve Mental Health in the Workplace

More than half of Americans will be diagnosed with a mental health condition in their lifetime and may experience associated barriers to entering and maintaining employment. At a time when ...
Strategies For Deploying Surface Transportation Funds For Workforce Development And Postsecondary Education

Strategies For Deploying Surface Transportation Funds For Workforce Development And Postsecondary Education

As states implement the IIJA, it will be critical that they ensure workers are equipped to participate successfully in the highway construction workforce and that education partners and the public ...
Reevaluating Degree Requirements For Government Jobs

Reevaluating Degree Requirements For Government Jobs

Governors are implementing a variety of workforce development initiatives to expand pathways to opportunity and build a stronger, fairer economy. In addition to training and apprenticeship programs, the issue of ...
NGA Meeting Highlight: How Two Governors are Addressing Barriers to Work

NGA Meeting Highlight: How Two Governors are Addressing Barriers to Work

Even as millions of job vacancies go unfilled, millions of working-age people are either unemployed, unable to make ends meet with their paycheck, or sidelined from the labor market by ...
Aligning State Economic and Workforce Development Strategies for Resilient and Vibrant Economies

Aligning State Economic and Workforce Development Strategies for Resilient and Vibrant Economies

During the 2023 NGA Winter Workforce Symposium a discussion was held on how state economic development and workforce development activities can become better aligned to meet the needs of employers ...

Economic Policy Library

Understanding the State and Territory Role in Implementing the CHIPS for America Fund

Understanding the State and Territory Role in Implementing the CHIPS for America Fund

States and territories will assess their competitive advantages, assets, and opportunities, as well as identify what they still need to develop with regard to their regional ecosystems. The nation’s Governors ...
Broadband

Broadband

Access to fast, reliable broadband is critical to households, businesses, and communities in the modern economy. The ongoing COVID-19 public health emergency has underscored the necessity of broadband access for ...
Governors Urge Congress to Finalize FY23 Spending Package

Governors Urge Congress to Finalize FY23 Spending Package

States and territories succeed when there is certainty and stability in federal resources. The Honorable Nancy PelosiSpeaker United States House of Representatives The Honorable Kevin McCarthy Republican Leader United States ...
6 States Awarded Grant Funding to Boost Workforce Participation, Economic Mobility

6 States Awarded Grant Funding to Boost Workforce Participation, Economic Mobility

Arkansas, Colorado, Indiana, North Dakota, Virginia and Washington to develop programs to promote skills-based training and hiring WASHINGTON D.C. – Arkansas, Colorado, Indiana, North Dakota, Virginia and Washington will receive ...
States Convening to Discuss Improving Economic Mobility

States Convening to Discuss Improving Economic Mobility

From coast to coast, Governors are committed to improving economic mobility outcomes for families in their states and are investing in innovative programs—including in fields traditionally underutilized for economic security—and ...
Congress Passes Short-Term Funding, Governors Call for Full-Year Appropriations

Congress Passes Short-Term Funding, Governors Call for Full-Year Appropriations

Today, National Governors Association Chair Governor Phil Murphy of New Jersey and Vice Chair Governor Spencer Cox of Utah released the following statement after the Senate and House passed a ...
What Inflation Means for States and Territories: A Two-Part Briefing Series

What Inflation Means for States and Territories: A Two-Part Briefing Series

With inflation grabbing headlines and putting a financial squeeze on many households in recent months, the National Governors Association hosted a two-part briefing series for Governors’ staff and state and ...
Advancing Economic Mobility for Low-Income Families: Policy Options for Governors

Advancing Economic Mobility for Low-Income Families: Policy Options for Governors

As we look to post-pandemic recovery, it will be critical to ensure that individuals have access to resources and supports that not only help them meet basic needs but also ...
Letter Urges Congress to provide a one-year extension of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program

Letter Urges Congress to provide a one-year extension of the Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF) program

The Honorable Ron Wyden ChairmanSenate Committee on Finance 219 Dirksen Senate Office Building Washington, DC 20510 The Honorable Richard E. NealChairmanHouse Committee on Ways and Means 2309 Cannon Building Washington, ...