fbpx Urban Rebirth: Economic Considerations for Reconstruction in Kharkiv and Ukraine | Harvard Kennedy School

HKS Affiliated Authors


December 22, 2022, Paper: "The Ukrainian economy will need to be reoriented after the devastating war from East to West, from heavy industry to a knowledge economy, and from polluting to green infrastructure. What strategies will enable Kharkiv, and the other cities of Ukraine, to rebuild after the war? Human capital is the long-run source of urban success, and Kharkiv’s future depends on attracting and retaining talented and entrepreneurial people, which will be challenging as long as risks of conflict remain. A beautiful and functional physical space is one tool in the battle for global talent, but legal and economic infrastructure must wrap around the physical structures. Kharkiv’s historic universities provide a good basis for rebuilding around human capital, especially if those universities form that core of an entrepreneurial economy. Faster business permitting and strong rule-of-law can help that economy to flourish. Kharkiv may have a particular role to play in research and then developing technologies which can reduce greenhouse emissions in the economy of Ukraine. As infrastructure gets rebuilt, smart institutions can be embraced to ensure that this infrastructure is well-maintained and used appropriately."