About Me

My ultimate goal is to make our cities stronger, more resilient, and more equitable.

“Steven Pedigo is one of today’s city and economic development stars. He keeps me steeped in the professional practice of urban development, helping to deepen my understanding of the practical implications.”
— Richard Florida, Author, The Rise of the Creative Class

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Steven Pedigo (he/him/his) is an expert in economic and urban development, anchor engagement, city strategy, and placemaking. Steven has advised and collaborated with more than 50 cities, universities, developers, nonprofits, and Fortune 500 companies across the globe to build more creative, innovative, and inclusive communities.

As an entrepreneur, Steven has founded two university research, policy, and engagement centers (one at the University of Texas at Austin and another at New York University), and he was responsible for reimagining the engagement and brand platform for the country’s leading voice (ICIC) for America’s inner cities.

Steven is the founding executive director of the LBJ Urban Lab and a professor of practice at the Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs at the University of Texas at Austin. He is also a distinguished fellow at the NYU Schack Institute of Real Estate. In addition to his academic roles, he leads the economic development and strategy practice at Resonance Consultancy, a leading advisor in destination development, real estate, and placemaking.

Pedigo has more than 15 years of experience as an advisor to city, university, private-sector, and nonprofit leaders in New York, Jerusalem, Vancouver, Denver, Dallas, Washington, D.C., Brisbane, the Yukon, Tulsa, Austin, Portland, Newark, San Diego-Tijuana, Miami, Sao Paulo, Monterrey, Mexico City, and many other communities. His corporate clients include BMW, Converse, Starwood Hotels, Philips, Cirque du Soleil, Audi, Pinewood Studios, Zappos, EDENS, Kraft, among others.

Previously, he was a clinical professor at New York University and the inaugural director of the NYU Schack Institute of Real Estate Urban LabEarlier in his career, Steven served as vice president for the Initiative for a Competitive Inner City (ICIC), a national research organization founded by Harvard Business School professor Michael Porter to encourage private-sector investment into U.S. distressed urban areas. Prior to ICIC, Steven was the vice president for business attraction and research for Greater Portland, Inc., and he began his career as the director of research for the Greater Washington Initiative and Board of Trade.

Pedigo holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of Texas at Austin and graduate degrees from the Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Steven lives in Austin, Texas with his husband Brian and their Boston Terrier, Cornelius-Jack.  You can find him on twitter @iamstevenpedigo.

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Steven doesn’t just pay lip service to inclusive economic growth. He has spent his entire career working with cities to create equitable development plans that promote opportunity for all residents.

Kim ZeuliSenior Vice President and Director of Research, ICIC

Steven brought the right balance between local and global expertise to our economic development plan, helping to foster an inclusive and energetic process.

Mike BomarCEO, Columbia River Economic Development Corporation

“Critical thinker, outstanding researcher, brilliant writer, and consummate professional are what comes to mind when I think of Steven.”

Brian Schriner Dean, FIU | College of Communication, Architecture + The Arts

Steven Pedigo has a talent for intuitively assessing a community’s competitive advantages and creating actionable strategies.

Marjette UpshurDirector, Lynchburg Office of Economic Development & Tourism

Steven Pedigo is a data-driven thinker who turns strategies into action. And, he’s a blast to work with too.

Alisa PyszkaPrincipal, Leland Consulting Group