Since 2008, the Institute of Social and Economic Research (ISER) has been carrying out a broad special research initiative—Investing for Alaska’s Future. The goal of the initiative is to help Alaskans decide how to invest the state’s resources in ways that foster a healthy future economy. It aims to do that through research that shows the relationship between government policies and economic development, helps inform investment decisions, and monitors state economic and fiscal conditions.

Generous, ongoing grants from Northrim Bank have paid for most of the reports, presentations, and other work done under the initiative. In the most recent years, GCI—an Alaska-based telecommunications company—and the University of Alaska’s strategic investment funds have also provided support. Scott Goldsmith, now a professor emeritus of economics, directed the initiative until 2016. Mouhcine Guettabi, assistant professor of economics, currently oversees the research.

Current Projects, October 2017

  • Comparing Alaska state government spending to that of all other states; states that produce oil; and states that are a similar size.
  • Modeling the Permanent Fund, to evaluate how different withdrawal rates could affect future fund growth.
  • Updating the MAP model, which forecasts economic activity.
  • Developing a computable general equilibrium (CGE) model of the Alaska economy.
  • Assessing the long-term effects of the Red Dog zinc mine on the Northwest Arctic Borough.
  • Examining who benefits from an oil boom, based on evidence from unique Alaska data.

Initiative Products, 2008 – June 2017