New Beacon Hill Institute “competitiveness index” places New Mexico at 48th

The Beacon Hill Institute at Suffolk (Mass.) University publishes an annual index of state competitiveness. You can find the full report here. In the 2014 edition, New Mexico beat out only New Jersey and Mississippi. Regardless of whether one agrees with all aspects of this particular index, there are some interesting components once one gets beyond the aggregate ranking.

In terms of safety, New Mexico ranked 49th;

In terms of infrastructure, New Mexico ranked 42nd. This may seem like it points to poor road quality, but two of the three factors in the index were Mobile Phones per 1,000 (we came in 47) and High-speed lines per 1,000 (we came in 48);

In terms of government openness, New Mexico ranked 46th, but this is not an indicator of government openness. Rather, the rankings were based on the percent of population born abroad, exports per capita, dollars (we ranked 49th), and incoming foreign direct investment per capita, dollars 47.

Our best single factor was in the “Environmental policy subindex” in which our toxic release inventory as measured in pounds per sq. miles was ranked 5th overall.

It is an interesting report. 48th is not where we’d like to be, but a lot of the indicators are outcome-based as opposed to public policy based.