Pokémon Go Bringing Gamers to Underused Public Spaces

August 29th, 2016

By Alex Highley

In the last few months, Pokémon Go has helped shift the gaming community from their TV and computer monitors to outdoor locations where they search for highly coveted Pokémon species. By bringing gamers out of their homes to parks, monuments, streets, and courtyards that they otherwise might never have visited, this game is changing the way these public spaces are being used, at least for now. Businesses are taking note and are attempting to take advantage of the new market of people that are within a short distance. Of course, the long-term value of the game remains to be seen since the popularity of the game will likely wane eventually. But there is the possibility that more video games will be created like Pokémon Go in the future, further drawing throngs of people into public areas and engaging them with the surrounding amenities, businesses, and people. GOPC supports creative ways of bringing people into contact with the assets and anchor institutions of Ohio’s cities.

Pokemon Go Downtown Dayton

With gamers walking down underused streets and ambling around public parks, people who otherwise might not have been outside are now new visitors to these areas, and more likely to participate in other activities such as buying a coffee at a nearby shop, interacting with strangers, or walking around a previously empty park. Increased interaction in these areas that were previously uninhabited will help boost the image of these public spaces, which often suffer from the stigma attached to underuse. New ways of attracting new visitors to city parks and plazas will help spur economic and social growth in public spaces in the future.


Neighborhoods in America’s Legacy Cities: A Dialogue in Detroit

August 4th, 2016

Greater Ohio Policy Center is excited to cosponsor a four-day event next month on the historic preservation of America’s legacy cities. The Michigan State Historic Preservation Office (SHPO), Michigan State Housing Development Authority (MSDHA), will convene an interdisciplinary meeting in Detroit, Michigan September 13-16, 2016 to discuss the role of historic preservation in revitalizing legacy cities, where long-term population loss and economic decline present significant challenges for the future of the urban built environment.

Feedback from the  Historic Preservation in America’s Legacy Cities conference held at Cleveland State University in 2014 strongly demonstrates a need to continue and strengthen this important conversation among key stakeholders and decision-makers from legacy cities throughout the country.  At this crucial juncture, there are difficult questions about what role preservation can and should play in shaping the future of legacy cities, how to identify and leverage historic assets, what benefits and impediments exist in integrating preservation into community and economic development, and how we make decisions about what we save and what we destroy.  Detroit, a true legacy city that is rebuilding after years of disinvestment, will provide the perfect setting and context in which to raise these questions.

DetroitSkyline wikicommons Cropped

Photo Credit: Wikicommons

The conference will bring together preservationists, community developers, economic developers, urban planners, urban policymakers, urban designers, and others.  It will be an opportunity to cross-collaborate, share ideas, and devise solutions with the goals of launching a more integrated approach to planning for the future of Legacy Cities, bringing historic preservation into urban policymaking and crafting a 21st century preservation profession that is responsive to the needs and conditions of Legacy Cities.

Go Here to learn more about this Event


Internship Opening: GOPC seeks candidates for Research & Conference Support Intern position

August 2nd, 2016

The Greater Ohio Policy Center seeks qualified candidates to fill the Research Intern position. The description below is also available on the Job Opportunities page in PDF format.

Qualified candidates will be interviewed on a rolling basis. Applications will be accepted until position is filled.

Thank you for your interest in GOPC.


Intern, Research & Conference Support

Greater Ohio Policy Center

Candidate Position Description

The Greater Ohio Policy Center (GOPC) seeks an intern to assist GOPC in championing revitalization and sustainable growth in Ohio. This position will provide research support to senior staff and assist with preparing for a large conference that will occur in March 2017. GOPC seeks an intern who is interested in urban revitalization issues, such as brownfield site remediation, water and sewer infrastructure, transportation, and housing.

This position is part-time (15 hours/week) and will begin in mid-August and will end in late December 2016 (i.e. Fall 2016 semester).
Intern will work under the direction of the Senior Policy Fellow and the Urban Revitalization Project Specialist. Intern will report to the Deputy Director.

Principal Duties and Responsibilities

This position will be responsible for the following activities:

  • Undertake directed research to assist GOPC’s mid-level and senior staff in carrying out high-quality research projects
  • Support senior staff in raising GOPC’s public profile by preparing select research, talking points and memos for speaking engagements and other outreach opportunities
  • Aid in planning and taking notes at meetings related to research project development and implementation
  • Assist GOPC’s communications staff in growing GOPC’s supporter base
  • Effectively advocate on GOPC’s issues in a bipartisan and non-partisan manner in all settings and situations

Percentages below denote an approximation of the amount of time the Intern, Research and Conference Support would spend on each major job duty.

Research and Project Assistance (75%)

  • Undertake select research under direction of senior staff that contributes to GOPC’s outreach efforts, and policy and advocacy work; support project managers in carrying out research projects, such as investigating different financing models and developing policy recommendations
  • Provide research support through: basic Census and ACS data gathering and graphing, literature scans and reviews, select interviews, and other information gathering activities
  • Must be a critical reader, thinker, and writer who is able to summarize key takeaways and can effectively communicate these takeaways in written memos and in meetings

Conference Planning and Organizational Support (25%)

  • Assist senior and mid-level staff with planning and organizing the GOPC Policy Summit in March 2017 and other convenings, roundtables, and large events. Responsibilities may include:
    • Assist with tracking panel development and panelist confirmations; assist with finalizing contact and biography information of panelists
    • Assist with printing and organizing conference
    • Assist with preparing Awards Ceremony
  • Assist senior staff with scheduling meetings with stakeholders and other partners
  • Other relevant duties as assigned

Education/Experience Requirements

  • Minimum 2 years of college experience
  • Interest in cities and revitalization. Coursework in urban and regional planning, public policy, or social sciences preferred
  • Experience with Microsoft Excel and Word strongly preferred. Experience with Adobe InDesign or other visual design programs preferred, not required

Knowledge Requirements

  • Must be strong writer
  • Must exhibit high degree of professionalism appropriate for high level partners
  • Must be extremely detail-oriented

Required Application Materials

  • Resume
  • Cover letter (generic cover letters and resumes will not be seriously considered)
  • One writing sample available upon request
  • Contact information for three references, including at least one academic reference

Send cover letter and resume to Jon Honeck, PhD, Senior Policy Fellow, jhoneck@greaterohio.org.

Other Job Information

  • The Greater Ohio Policy Center is an Equal Opportunity Employer.
  • Intern is expected to work in the GOPC office in Columbus during normal business hours (8a-5p).
  • Qualified candidates will be interviewed on a rolling basis. Applications will be accepted until position is filled.


This is an hourly employee position, with estimated rate of $10-$14/hour, depending on experience and qualifications.

About the Organization

The mission of the Greater Ohio Policy Center is to champion revitalization and sustainable growth in Ohio.
Greater Ohio Policy Center (GOPC) is a mission-driven non-profit, non-partisan organization based in Columbus and operating statewide. GOPC develops and advances policies and practices that value our urban cores and metropolitan regions as economic drivers and preserve Ohio’s open space and farmland.
Through education, research and outreach, GOPC strives to create a political and policy climate that advances economic growth through urban revitalization, modernized transportation options, improvements to infrastructure, and talent development and retention within the state.