Engagement & Economic Development

Excellence in Engagement and Economic Development

Actively engage the university’s strengths to support the health, economic, and social development of Indiana, the nation, and the world.

  • Translating innovation. Accelerate the transformation of the innovations and intellectual property developed by IU faculty, staff, and students into new products, services, and companies to improve the Indiana economy and national competitiveness.
  • Strong communities. Partner with the communities and regions of which IU is a part to provide education, expertise, innovation, and leadership for their advancement.

As a public institution, IU maintains a steadfast commitment to contribute to the economic vitality and cultural enrichment of the state of Indiana, while extending its impact across the nation and around the world. The 20,000-plus students IU graduates each year collectively represent an essential institutional component advancing this objective.

Under the stewardship of the Office of the Vice President for Engagement, IU’s Innovate Indiana initiative engages strategic partners to channel and apply the university’s vast intellectual resources and expertise, enhancing Indiana’s economic growth and quality of life for Hoosiers. Innovate Indiana, a statewide initiative connecting all of IU’s eight campuses, encompasses the university’s collective outreach efforts dedicated to the advancement of economic development and technology commercialization in Indiana. The IU Research and Technology Corporation (IURTC), a cornerstone of Innovate Indiana, manages the university’s technology commercialization enterprise by focusing on translating applied research and discoveries into economic opportunity through licensing to existing firms and supporting new startup ventures.

The Indiana University Research and Technology Corporation (IURTC) is a not-for-profit agency that assists IU faculty and researchers in realizing the commercial potential of their discoveries.

Recognizing that innovation is the engine that drives economic growth, IU plays a key role in fostering a culture of innovation in Indiana. IU faculty and staff directly engage with the state through its nonprofit and public institutions, offering independent, expert policy advice. All IU campuses and schools collaborate with organizations in their communities to translate research expertise into policy solutions, while developing leading educational programs relevant to the state’s future needs. A more robust Indiana economy provides IU graduates with greater opportunities to remain in the state, building their careers and lives in Indiana.

As the state having the greatest proportion of its workforce in manufacturing, Indiana faces significant challenges stemming from the recent economic recession and restructuring. Global shifts in the manufacturing sector have resulted in painful adjustments, leading to a reassessment of Indiana’s economic positioning for the future. IU can be of great assistance to the state of Indiana by helping, through education and other exchanges, to improve the international footprint of the state’s manufacturing and other economic sectors. The need for knowledge-based jobs and skills continues to grow as Indiana’s per capita wage gap continues to widen in comparison to national averages. Educational and health-based outcomes in Indiana lag behind other states, and locations of persistent poverty exist in both urban and rural areas of the state.

These critical factors underscore the university’s obligation. IU is a public university in a deep sense; it exists to benefit all the people of the state, and the world beyond, and has a charge to continue its long tradition of engagement in the economic, social, environmental, and cultural life of all Hoosiers. This charge applies to all IU campuses, and it has special significance for the regional campuses. These campuses’ communities and regions rely on their respective campuses for undergraduate and professional education that addresses regional needs. Engagement in the civic, cultural, social, and economic lives of their regions is a central mission of the regional campuses, and their communities and regions take great pride in their respective campuses.