Study Says Arkansas Needs to Act Now to Catch Up with 21st Century

SEPTEMBER 21, 2004 - Posted at 7:22 a.m. CDT

LITTLE ROCK, AR - A new report says that Arkansas has made significant economic progress but is still behind in modernizing its economic base.

Researchers say Arkansas has to do more to move from a manufacturing-based economy to a knowledge-based economy.  The report says the state needs of computer, high-tech, research, and information jobs.

The report was made by the Milken Institute in California and the University of Arkansas Center for Business and Economic Research.  The report says the state must take action now if it is ever to do better than place near the bottom.

The study acknowledged that Arkansas has a number of new high-tech firms and stressed that the state does not have to abandon its existing manufacturing, food processing and retail operations in order to be in sync with the 21st century.  But it also says Arkansas is starting at a disadvantage when it comes to bringing in knowledge-related jobs.

(Copyright 2004 by The Associated Press.  All Rights Reserved.)