Anderson Economic Group Work

Just-published article explains controversial Amazon HQ2 decisions

Nationally-recognized experts explain why New York City and D.C. were picked over other cities; Notes alternatives to NYC including Newark, Chicago, Atlanta–and even Detroit


East Lansing, Michigan—February 19, 2019—An award-winning article that explained Amazon’s choices among cities competing for the coveted “HQ2” facility has just been published. It demonstrates why New York City and Washington D.C. were the top cities chosen by Amazon, and lists similarly desirable cities that could serve as alternatives to the now-terminated Queens, New York project.

On November 13, 2018, Amazon announced that its second headquarters will be split between Queens, New York and Arlington, Virginia. The metro New York and Washington D.C. area ranked 1 and 6, respectively on the original HQ2 Index. On February 14, 2019, Amazon decided to only proceed with Arlington, Virginia, axing the New York plan.

“Business Strategy and Firm Location Decisions: Testing Traditional and Modern Methods,” by Anderson Economic Group CEO Patrick Anderson, was just published in the journal Business Economics, and is now available online. (The print version will be released shortly.) The article documents how three different sets of experts predicted the selection of 20 cities among the over 200 that applied as finalists for the project, and compares how these human experts performed against alternatives, including “artificial intelligence” models. The article won the 2018 Edmund Mennis award from the National Association for Business Economics for “outstanding writing in business economics.”

“The article lists a number of similarly desirable cities for Amazon, which have a combination of excellent talent pool, reasonable costs of doing business, and desirable cultural amenities, plus access to mass transit. These include places like Chicago, Atlanta, and Newark, all of which scored well on our HQ2 Index,” said Patrick L. Anderson, CEO of Anderson Economic Group and the author of the prize-winning article. “On top of that, there are cities like Detroit, Cleveland, and Grand Rapids that didn’t make the original list of finalists, but are much more eager to attract Amazon and would probably roll out the red carpet,” he added.

Jason Fedorinchik

AEG—East Lansing, Michigan
[email protected]