Jump to main content.

A bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce
header_news

Annual Report

Tennessee


Program # of Grants EDA Funds
Disaster Relief 3 $2,075,362
Economic Adjustment Assistance 2 $939,588
Public Works 2 $1,340,225
Regional Innovation Strategies 2 $748,577
Planning 8 $1,573,000
Technical
Assistance
1 $128,592
Total 18 $6,805,344

The Science Research Park in the Medical Center District of Memphis, Tennessee, is at the heart of one of the nation’s leading bioscience research clusters. Home to the University of Tennessee Health Science Center (UTHSC) and its eight affiliated teaching hospitals, including Le Bonheur Children’s Hospital and St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, as many as one in every seven Memphians currently work in the bioscience sector.1

In 2014, UTHSC and the Memphis Bioworks Foundation (Bioworks) developed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) to jointly redefine and expand the existing state-of-the-art Science Research Park in the downtown Medical Center District.  This collaboration will bring together UTHSC’s growing urban academic research and education campus with Bioworks’ adjacent 15-acre research park to further the organizations’ joint missions of increasing academia/private sector partnerships and commercializing technology and engage industry.

Prior to this MOU, UTHSC and Bioworks had been working in parallel, but not on a unified path. The typical management and marketing structure required for a successful research park is not in place, making it much harder for both entities to attract private sector tenants. In May 2015, as part of EDA’s i6 Challenge, EDA invested $500,000 to support an in-depth planning, feasibility, and marketing study of the best plan for the next phase of the University of Tennessee Health Science Center Biotechnology Research Park.

1. “Memphis is Life Science,“ http://www.memphischamber.com/Articles/DoBusiness/pdfBioscienceBro.aspx, accessed May 4, 2016.