This virtual discussion about local investment networks featured author and investment advisor Michael Shuman about how our local LINs can help shape our economy after COVID-19.
Breakout sessions (not recorded) included
1. COVID Changes and Associated Opportunities: How can LINs respond to recent shiftsand trends like rural restructuring, the need for high quality broadband,options for remote work, the shift toward ecommerce, etc.?
2. Local & Liveable: LINs can play an important role inboosting Main Street vitality and more. Explore how LINS can address communitypriorities like improving trail access and pedestrian walkways, protecting whatmatters most to us, and contributing to local cultural vibrancy.
3. Collaborating AcrossSectors: COVID-19has opened the door for more businesses to access funding sources typicallyreserved for nonprofits. The public sector is also showing a willingness tosupport small local businesses in new ways. Where do LINs fit into this puzzle?Can grants for startups or green businesses help the entrepreneurs we supportgrow environmental and social returns as well as our bottom line? What otheropportunities are out there?
4. Equity & Equality: What role could LINs play incombating racism or addressing widening economicinequality? Access to social networks and capital are two wayswe might be part of the solution. How does that work, though? And what otherways can LINs step up and support a more inclusive economy for everyone?
5. Fluctuations andRisks: Interestrates are low and COVID-19 has created a high rate of business turnover andfailure. What does this mean for investing in the future? Can this spur loansand opportunities? What are the risks to investors?
6. Where Do I Start? New to the concept of LINs? Thinkingof starting one in your community but don't know how? Let's talk about thebasics, resources, and where you can go to learn more.
Participants included the Methow Investment Network (MIN), Local Investing Opportunities Network (LION), Thurston Investment Network (ThINk), Rural Investment Ventures for Economic Resilience (RIVER), Ferry LIN (Republic, Curlew & Keller), LCIN (Lower Columbia Investment Network)
THANK YOU to our supporting organizations: Twispworks, WashingtonState Microenterprise Association (WSMA), Association of Washington Cities,Washington State University Extension (WSU), Neighborhood AssociatesCorporation.