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Paradox Prize pilot programs find innovative solutions to fill Northeast Ohio transportation gaps

Chicken and egg logo for The Paradox Prize.
Chicken and egg logo for The Paradox Prize.

For many workers, the daily commute is part of the routine of their jobs.  But for a sizeable portion of Northeast Ohio’s workforce, the commute, is in and of itself a  barrier to getting and keeping a job.  Over time, the region has become more geographically sprawling, spacing out jobs and disconnecting a portion of the workforce and talent pool that employers need to fill those positions.

In 2019, the Fund for Our Economic Future launched the Paradox Prize.  It set out to find innovating ways to address the issue that without a car you can’t get and hold a job and without a job you cannot afford a car.  The $1-million in prize money from the competition helped fund a number of pilot program solutions to help address gaps in the transportation system and better connect workers and employers.

More than 150 proposals were submitted from across the region and eight of those ideas rose to the top.

Those pilot program innovators will be part of an event Thursday  night at the Agora.  The event will not only share the program successes but also build on the work started in these programs and give practical ideas to civic and business leaders that can be implemented.

We are going to talk about some of those pilot programs and what the Paradox Prize competition has already provided in terms of lessons learned.

To read more about the Paradox Program check out this report from the Fund for Our Economic Future

Registration for “Transportation and the Quest for Talent: Putting the Paradox Prize to Work” event at the Agora. Use code PP2022VIP.


Bethia Burke, President, Fund for Our Economic Future 
Ben Capelle, CEO, Laketran 
Wendy Caldwell, Founder and Executive Director, P2R Training and Resource Center 

Leigh Barr is a coordinating producer for the "Sound of Ideas" and the "Sound of Ideas Reporters Roundtable."