Trends in Town-Gown Collaboration

Trending-Town-GownToday’s economy elevates the value of higher education institutions to the highest degree of public awareness ever demonstrated. Higher education institutions impact their community in a host of very obvious ways, such as:

  • Supporting the development of 21st century talent armed with skills to drive modern business;
  • Employing a range of professionals in a sector often recognized as the largest in many small communities;
  • and Initiating research and development initiatives supporting the advancement of technology and improved economic performance.

These examples speak to the common ways nearly every institution engages. Yet, what does it mean for a campus to be truly connected to its community? Continue reading “Trends in Town-Gown Collaboration”

Too Cool for School? Think Again.

141103-Higher-Ed-UEDAFourth Economy has been immersed this year in conversations about higher education’s role in economic development. Over the summer we worked with a major research university to identify ways for improving their business engagement practices. This effort involved hosting a roundtable discussion with university-based economic development practitioners from around the country.

In October, Fourth Economy team members managed the 2014 University Economic Development Association (UEDA) Summit in Santa Fe, New Mexico, which brought together more than 230 economic development representatives from higher education, economic development organizations, consulting firms, federal agencies, and many other groups (you can view the agenda and presentations here). Conference participants shared and discussed best practices, including initial thought leadership from UEDA’s Body of Knowledge Committee, developed in conjunction with representatives from the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities (APLU). Continue reading “Too Cool for School? Think Again.”

School Days in the Fourth Economy

131023-Higher-EducationIt seems to be college and university season in the Fourth Economy Consulting offices. We have recently welcomed two new staffers to our team with strong roots in working with higher education. In the past few weeks Ali Mabel joined our team as Director of Innovation Strategies. Ali comes to us by way of the University of Illinois where she was Program Coordinator at the Research Park. Prior to that she managed client engagements for Ernst and Young supporting finance and supply chain processes. This mix of private and university experience is a terrific fit with the rest of the team’s skill sets.

Shortly before that Susan Fisher  joined us as a Research Analyst and brings to our team  her expertise in linear cash flow analysis and her extensive experience conducting complex quantitative and qualitative research, analysis and reporting to health care and higher education projects. Susan adds a depth to our research capabilities that we were looking for and now makes our research capabilities unrivaled in our market. Continue reading “School Days in the Fourth Economy”

Connecting Town and Gown through the University Economic Development Association (UEDA)

Photo-Rustiq-TemplateFourth Economy has been providing management and development services to the University Economic Development Association (UEDA) for more than a year now.  Last month more than thirty UEDA members and Board convened in Washington D.C. to discuss the Association’s operational plan and provide updates on each of the committees’ action items. “A special thanks to all of those who were able to attend the UEDA Spring meeting,” said UEDA President Chuck Shoopman. “We learned from our presenters and each other while making good progress with face-to-face committee meetings. The energy in the room was positive and productive,” Shoopman added.
Continue reading “Connecting Town and Gown through the University Economic Development Association (UEDA)”

Best Practices for the Fourth Economy – University Economic Development Association (UEDA) Announces 2012 Awards of Excellence Winners

Effectively engaging higher education resources for community is economic development is critical to success in the fourth economy.  Earlier this year, the Fourth Economy team was hired by the University Economic Development Association (UEDA) to help the organization advance its strategic mission – a mission to leverage higher education and enhance our national competitiveness.

UEDA announced its 2012 Awards of Excellence winners during its Annual Summit held this October in Chattanooga, Tennessee.   The Awards of Excellence Program recognizes UEDA members who are transforming their campuses into engines of economic prosperity through leading edge initiatives in five categories: 1) Community Connected Campus: initiatives that promote the physical development of quality connected campuses and their surrounding communities; 2) Research and Analysis:  initiatives that enhance the capacity of colleges and universities to provide new forms of research and tools for community, economic and workforce development practitioners; 3) Leadership and Collaboration: initiatives that support the development of collaborative economic development strategies and the leaders required to implement them; 4) Innovation and Entrepreneurship: initiatives designed to support startups, high-growth companies and clusters within a region; and 5) Talent Development: initiatives that promote the development of 21st-century skills.  Continue reading “Best Practices for the Fourth Economy – University Economic Development Association (UEDA) Announces 2012 Awards of Excellence Winners”

Fourth Economy Helps Advance University Economic Development Association (UEDA) Mission and Impact

By now we all know that talent, innovation and quality place-based strategies are at the heart of the fourth economy.  Earlier this year, the Fourth Economy team was hired by the University Economic Development Association (UEDA) to help the organization advance its strategic mission – a mission to leverage higher education and enhance our national competitiveness.

Our first year efforts culminated in one of the largest Annual Summit’s since the organization’s founding.  More than 175 delegates convened in Chattanooga, Tennessee in October for the three-day conference.

“There has never been a more important time for this delegation to convene than now,” said William Michalerya, UEDA President. “In the next few weeks, there will be a national election and regardless of the outcome, there will be a renewed discussion and interest in how best our Country should leverage its innovation assets and make key investments in those resources,” Michalerya added. Continue reading “Fourth Economy Helps Advance University Economic Development Association (UEDA) Mission and Impact”

Elements: Making a Difference in Indianapolis

 

Last month, the Fourth Economy team organized a panel discussion at the annual summit of the University Economic Development Association (UEDA) in Indianapolis, IN. The panel topic “Partnerships for Place-making” brought together a cross-sector of university, private real estate and community development specialists.

How colleges and universities can engage for community and economic development is an important fourth economy element. Aaron Laramore, Program Officer for the Local Initiatives Support Corporation (LISC) of Indianapolis summarized the key resources and roles his regional universities play within the community development nexus.

The Role?

  1. Research and Analysis – They can help to effectively define the problem, determine how long has it been going on, how bad it is, and what can be done.
  2. Implementation – They can help development solutions, deployment strategies and evaluate results.
  3. Education – They can help inform the community on project opportunities and guide the community planning process

Resources in Indy?

Within the Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis (IU-PUI) partnership, several centers and community resources exist.

The Center for Urban Health researches the enhancement of health and sustainability for urban populations, focused on environmental legacies to include reduced contamination, removing social and economic disparities and emerging threats such climate change and water quality.

The Center for Service and Learning partners students, faculty and staff with near campus neighborhoods to address community and social justice issues.

The Polis Center is an academic research center with practical and applied orientation on issues related to metro Indianapolis and other mid-sized American cities using geospatial information systems

The Outcomes in Indy?

Several key community improvement initiatives and development projects have resulted through these partnerships.

Improving Kids Environment (IKE) – IKE is a local non-profit in Indianapolis focused on the reduction of environmental threats to children’s health. IKE uses research and tactical expertise from IUPUI to educate residents on soil lead levels, environmental hot spots, safe gardening techniques and air quality monitoring.

Indy Indicators – Indy Indicators is a website resource measuring and engaging people in the quality of life in Central Indiana by providing interactive maps based on census tracts and neighborhoods on key indicators, metrics and community assessments.

IUPUI Fit for Life – Fit for Life assists neighborhoods in creating long-rage health plans to reduce obesity, heart desease, diabetes, high blood pressure and stroke. Fit For Life established a 6,000 square foot wellness center open for use by parents and community members

Growing Nearwest – The IUPUI Herron School of Arts enlisted two classes to create a garden identity and image for the initiative and marketing materials. A design team engaged community residents in determining relevant crops, garden sites and strategies to address water and labor engagement to support the gardens.

Click here to view Aaron’s full presentation:

LISC mobilizes corporate, government and philanthropic support to provide local community development organizations with 1) loans, grants and equity investments, 2) local, statewide and national policy support and 3) technical and management assistance.

If you have a fourth economy partnership story you would like to share with us, drop us a note below…