ESI Turns 10: What Lies Ahead

Just as today’s forward-looking post builds from last week’s retrospective look, we are honored to stand on the shoulders of the co-presidents who went before us and set the standard for leadership and integrity in economic consulting. Steve Mullin and Dick Voith have set a high bar for us; thankfully, they’re still firing on all cylinders to help us to succeed.

We work hard every day to steward the reputation of the firm as providing sophisticated quantitative analysis and policy research to advance solutions in the real world for a wide range of clients. What energizes us about this role is how great the challenge and opportunity will be to do this well going forward. We are living, after all, in an era of mountains of data and yet a deep mistrust of Big Data, seeking to contribute to a deeply inquisitive social discourse whose participants are nevertheless often skeptical of if not downright antagonistic of “the other side.” Honest, substantive analysis has never been so assailed and yet so valued.

Succeeding as a firm for the next 10 years and beyond, and having fun while we’re at it, will thus involve answering more and harder questions than ever before. To “what’s going on,” a bread and butter inquiry we’ve historically been brought in to provide clarity on, we find ourselves being asked three additional questions, which we are eager to rise to the occasion to have a meaningful answer to:

  • “What’s next” – People want to see around corners, and ESI is ready to detect the patterns from what was before to inform what might be after.
  • “What should be next” – “Should” introduces a value judgment into the conversation, which is to say some outcomes are better than others. Which we’re well suited to help people navigate, given our training in seeing all sides of a discussion and assigning weights to different outcomes.
  • “How do we get there” – Analysis is only as good as its ability to be translated into advice, which in turn is only as good as its ability to be actionable. Having sat in many professional seats in our collective careers, we can speak from experience about how to get things done and move the ball forward.

That ought to keep us busy for a while. We’re eager to continue the good work into a bright future, and to engage with many people, organizations, and issues along the way.


Peter Angelides, President & Principal | [email protected]

Dr. Angelides focuses his work at the intersection of economics and urban development, including real estate, economic development, city planning, transportation, tax policy, valuation, and litigation. He helps clients pursue economic development, gain entitlements, assess feasibility, and prepare grant applications, among other undertakings. He leads ESI’s Real Estate and Litigation practices, and he often presents findings in public venues, such as courtrooms or public hearings.


  Lee Huang, President & Principal | [email protected] 

Lee Huang brings over 20 years of experience in economic development experience to ESI public, private, institutional, and not-for-profit clients. He leads consulting engagements in a wide range of fields, including higher education, economic inclusion, environmental sustainability, historic preservation, real estate, neighborhood economic development, non-profits, retail, state and local government, strategic planning, tax policy, and tourism/hospitality, and is a sought-after speaker on these and other topics.


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