Case | HBS Case Collection | January 2013 (Revised November 2016)

The New Carolina Initiative

by Michael E. Porter and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo


The New Carolina Initiative case explores the process of fostering competitiveness in the subnational region, South Carolina, one of the poorest states in the United States. The case has been developed primarily for use in the course "Microeconomics of Competitiveness," developing the concept of organizations for competitiveness in a subnational region and the elements of constructing an economic strategy. The case also outlines the adopted cluster vision of development for the state and the various task forces created to upgrade the business environment of the state. South Carolina's Council on Competitiveness, New Carolina, is an organization with significant capacity to mobilize regional actors in various task forces and cluster initiatives. Showcasing the complexity and organizational challenges of building a competitiveness initiative, the case emphasizes the importance of engagement from both private and public sector representatives. The case also provides an opportunity to discuss the competitive position of the South Carolina economy in 2011.

Keywords: Public Sector; Poverty; Competitive Strategy; Private Sector; Economic Growth; South Carolina;


Porter, Michael E., and Jorge Ramirez-Vallejo. "The New Carolina Initiative." Harvard Business School Case 713-462, January 2013. (Revised November 2016.)