BOSTON – Rhode Island is decidedly average for economic opportunity, according to a new index developed at Harvard University and the University of Pennsylvania and published by The States Project.
On the Economic Opportunity Index, which analyzed unemployment, household income and income mobility, Rhode Island ranked 26th. Neighboring Massachusetts ranked first on the index.
“The states that invest in their citizens end up having better economies, which would go counter to the idea that we should strip down the size of government,” said Meredith Bagby, an author and founder of the group that published the index. “The flip side is that governments have to be well-managed.”
“States provide a really interesting way to look, to test out those philosophies” that were a focal point of this year’s political debate, Bagby said. “What’s better, big government or small government? What’s better for the economy?”