City of Chicago Turns to Kickstarter to Improve Economy

April 10, 2013

5:00 pm

Yesterday, the City of Chicago announced a curated Kickstarter page called Seed Chicago to feature projects that create jobs and improve Chicago’s economy.

The page includes 11 Kickstarter projects focused on underserved neighborhoods, selected by economic development group World Business Chicago. For example, the Garfield Park Fresh Food Market hopes to improve safety in Chicago’s West Side; a tamale food truck is looking to start a restaurant in Pilsen; and a summer program in Englewood will teach young people to code.

The initiative is part of Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel’s Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs. The plan’s goals include making Chicago more attractive to businesses and tourists, improving the workforce and supporting entrepreneurship, and – relevant here – strengthening neighborhoods to improve economic growth.

“By focusing on talent and business development within Chicago’s diverse neighborhoods, we are helping make these areas more vibrant so Chicago can compete in the new global economy,” says Eric Olson, deputy director of implementation for the Plan for Economic Growth and Jobs.

Kickstarter’s curated pages have been around since 2011, and they let organizations spotlight interesting and relevant projects. For example, companies like Etsy and Blip have their own pages.

If you want your project to be featured on Seed Chicago, fill out this form.

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Kira M. Newman is a Tech Cocktail writer interested in the harsh reality of entrepreneurship, work-life balance, and psychology. She is the founder of The Year of Happy and has been traveling around the world interviewing entrepreneurs in Asia, Europe, and North America since 2011. Follow her @kiramnewman or contact

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