Without economic intelligence your economic development efforts are basically just bribing companies to come to your community, often at the cost of the community itself. What is economic intelligence? It is knowing parameters, trends, competition, community cost per dollar, and community keys involving the greater good over the human propensity to win at all cost.
Economic intelligence in economic development is what makes economic development ethical, rather than a glory grabbing, win at all cost, race to the bottom. Corporate is great, but putting corporate over the community you are representing is not.