This report addresses the performance of Alaska Industrial Development and Export Authority (AIDEA), over the past 41 years. In contrast to previous studies, the report includes a rigorous analysis of the often overlooked opportunity costs the state government and Alaska households have paid to support AIDEA’s operations.
After establishing the real costs of AIDEA, the report turns to the benefits: Has AIDEA improved the economic well-being of Alaska households? If so, were the improvements sustainable? Were the benefits distributed fairly?
Finally, have the benefits been worth the costs? The report offers multiple perspectives on these questions, but it is not a “benefit-cost analysis” as that term is understood by economists. Economic analysts and accountants can help in framing questions and gathering evidence. This report is designed to provide such assistance, but the answers themselves turn on the values and judgments of individual Alaskans.