UA Recognized as Innovation and Economic Prosperity University
The designation — awarded to the UA and 17 other universities by the APLU’s Commission on Innovation, Competitiveness and Economic Prosperity — acknowledges those working in their states and regions to support economic development through a variety of activities. The activities include innovation and entrepreneurship, technology transfer, talent and workforce development, and community development.
Areas of accomplishment that advanced the UA’s application for the award include: the early success of the Never Settle strategic plan; the achievements of Tech Launch Arizona in technology innovation and commercialization; and a focus on biomedical research and health care, including the Phoenix Biomedical Campus and the historic partnership agreement with Banner Health.
"The University of Arizona is not only a top-tier research institution but also an important economic engine for our state," said Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey. "The university’s recognition by the Association of Public and Land-grant Universities underscores its value in both respects."
"From conducting and commercializing cutting-edge research, to providing a talented workforce to industry and serving as a magnet for new business, to fostering innovative partnerships, the University of Arizona has a long and distinguished track record of driving economic development," said Mark Killian, chairman of the Arizona Board of Regents. "The APLU designation further cements the university’s position as a leader in higher education and economic development."
"This designation is a wonderful recognition of the success that the University of Arizona is having with economic development, technology innovation and commercialization," said UA President Ann Weaver Hart. "These are vitally important parts of our mission as Arizona’s land-grant university, and they are at the heart of the UA’s Never Settle strategic plan. I am delighted with this news and look forward to the great things that will continue to come from Tech Launch Arizona and its partners at the UA and around our state."
The UA has recognized that healthy institutions need rapidly changing sources of innovation, competitiveness and economic growth in fields such as agriculture, engineering, medicine, entrepreneurship and technology.
Universities that have been awarded the Innovation and Economic Prosperity designation in the two years since it was created include Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue and Michigan.
APLU is a research, policy and advocacy organization dedicated to strengthening and advancing the work of public universities in the U.S., Canada and Mexico. It has a membership of more than 230 public research universities, land-grant institutions, state university systems and affiliated organizations, focusing on three goals: increasing degree completion and academic success, advancing scientific research, and expanding engagement.
"Public universities serve as economic engines for their local communities and states by conducting cutting-edge research to reach new breakthroughs and developing the talent to help existing businesses grow stronger and enabling new ones to develop and thrive," said Peter McPherson, president of APLU.