EDA-Supported University Center
In 2012, the Economic Policy Institute (EPI) (formerly Business Outreach Center) received a grant from the U.S. Department of Commerce, Economic Development Administration to become one of a select number of “University Centers,” and the only EDA-supported University Center in the State of Arizona.
Thus, EPI launched the University Center to strengthen and expand successful innovations already underway in Arizona’s economy, such as NACET (Northern Arizona Center for Entrepreneurship and Technology) or 4FRI (Four Forest Restoration Initiative).
The University Center works collaboratively with rural and urban communities statewide to:
- Provide technical assistance (TA)
- Conduct applied research for public, private & tribal entities to promote economic development
- Disseminate information to fill gaps and promote sustainable development.
EPI houses several respected centers that currently serve over 10,000 Arizona residents annually.
The following units are the backbone of the University Center, and include:
- Rural Policy Institute (RPI) which specializes in data-driven technical assistance and research for Arizona communities, emphasizing rural sectors but involved in statewide and regional economic and business research activities.
- Center for American Indian Economic Development (CAIED) which brings a Native American perspective to outreach programs and assists tribes statewide to stimulate and nurture entrepreneurship on Indian lands.
- Arizona Hospitality Research and Resource Center (AHRRC) which provides research and technical assistance statewide for the Grand Canyon State’s large tourism industry, specializing in customized market research (surveys, economic impact studies) and workforce training programs.
Thus, whether it is technical assistance with data, a tribal project or a tourism research project, the EPI University Center is ready to assist.