As research and education centers, public research universities fuel state and
national economic development. For example, in 2012–2013, the
University of North Carolina system and its affiliated medical institutions added
$27.9 billion in income to the state economy.13
In FY 2012, the University of Hawaii generated $3.61 billion in local business sales,
$1.10 billion in employee earnings, $194 million in state tax revenues, and over
28,500 jobs in the state.15
In Florida, nearly 8 percent of the state’s total workforce and 7 percent of the
state’s gross domestic product (GDP) is related in some way to the state university
Between 2012 and 2013, research at public universities resulted in more than14
Universities foster research- and innovation-based relationships with business,
industry, the nonprofit sector, and government. The University of Cincinnati
Research Institute, VT KnowledgeWorks at Virginia Tech, and Innovate ABQ at the
University of New Mexico all connect academic experts to industry partners and serve
as hubs of innovation and engines of growth. Many universities have created innovation
accelerators that encourage a culture of entrepreneurship by sponsoring start-up
competitions, providing seed funding, or offering catalyst grants, while also serving
as magnets to business and industry. The top innovation clusters in the country
are affiliated with and geographically near research universities, both public and
Universities manage their intellectual property for the public good.
While technology transfer and intellectual property can result in new revenue for
public research universities, the primary purpose of these policies is to serve
the public interest. Universities stimulate economic growth through responsible
management of intellectual property and its transfer.
13 University of North
Carolina, North Carolina Independent Colleges & Universities, and North Carolina
Community Colleges, Demonstrating the Collective Economic Value of North Carolina’s
Higher Education Institutions (February 2015), 2, http://www.northcarolina.edu/sites/default/files/documents/nche_mainreport_final_feb17.pdf.
14 Association of University
Technology Managers, AUTM Licensing Activity Survey FY2013 (Deerfield,
Ill.: Association of University Technology Managers, 2014).
15 The Economic Research
Organization at the University of Hawai’i, The Economic Impact of the University
of Hawai’i System (Honolulu: University of Hawai’i Economic Research Organization,
16 Alan W. Hodges,
Thomas J. Stevens, Rodney L. Clouser, Julie Harrington, Martijn Niekus, and Keith
Baker, Economic Contributions of the State University System of Florida in Fiscal
Year 2009–10 (March 8, 2012), http://www.fred.ifas.ufl.edu/economic-impact-analysis/pdf/SUS-of-Florida-FY-2009-10.pdf.
17 PitchBook, “The
Top 50 Universities Producing VC-Backed Entrepreneurs,” PitchBook Venture Capital
Monthly, August/September 2014, 5.