Michael Porter has argued that a sustainable economic base can be created in the inner city only if it has been created elsewhere: through private, for-profit, initiatives and investment based on economic self-interest and genuine competitive advantage-not through artificial inducements, charity, or government. Porter's ideas have prompted endorsement as well as criticism. More importantly, they have inspired a search for new solutions to inner city distress as well as a reassessment of current approaches. The Inner City defines a core debate in the United States over the future of a racially divided urban America. It is of inestimable importance to policy analysts, government officials, African American studies scholars, urban studies specialists, sociologists, and all those concerned with inner city revitalization.