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CHICAGO—One theme touched on during yesterday’s sessions at the SIOR 2013 Fall World Conference was branding. Former Pennsylvania Governor Tom Ridge, for example, spoke to the opening general session on America’s brand, both what it is and how it has been damaged in recent years. “We’ve got this incredible piece of real estate,” he said, referring to the US, its economic resources, and its rich cultural and ethnic diversity. He then asked, “if that’s the product, what’s the brand? Why is the idea of America very appealing?”

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