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A bureau within the U.S. Department of Commerce


Press Release

U.S. EDA Launches Regional Innovation Acceleration Network to Spur Innovation and Job Creation

Pittsburgh, Pa - U.S. Deputy Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development Brian P. McGowan today announced a $480,000 grant to the State Science & Technology Institute (SSTI) to launch the Regional Innovation Acceleration Network (RIAN) to assess innovation networks across the country to help identify economic development best practices and foster job creation. The announcement was made during SSTI's annual conference in Pittsburgh, Pa.

"The RIAN initiative is a critical component of the U.S. Economic Development Administration's Jobs and Innovation Partnership strategy, the agency's platform for long-term prosperity," said McGowan. "Working collaboratively on this important effort, EDA and SSTI will help to strengthen our nation's regions, and advance President Obama's national innovation policy. The RIAN will play a connecting role in identifying innovative networks across the country and ultimately will help economic development professionals leverage assets and strengths in areas like the Gulf and Space Coasts."

The grantee, SSTI, is a national nonprofit organization dedicated to improving government-industry programs that encourage economic growth through the application of science and technology. The Regional Innovation Acceleration Network (RIAN) project will work to accomplish three deliverables:

  • Map Innovation Assets - RIAN will assess where the innovation assets across the country are, what they are, and what their service area is.
  • Assess the Effectiveness of Innovation Networks Using Case Studies of Four Regions - RIAN will select four regions to conduct deeper analysis into the effectiveness of innovation networks, consisting of surveys, focus groups, examination of best practices in literature, and comparative studies.
  • Provide Technical Assistance to Innovation Networks - RIAN will leverage findings from previous deliverables to provide customized technical assistance to members of the innovation network to help communities leverage existing innovation networks and provide resources to help them foster networks when they are not already present.

About the U.S. Economic Development Administration (www.eda.gov): This year, the U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) marks 45 years of public service, with a mission of leading the federal economic development agenda by promoting competitiveness and preparing American regions for growth and success in the worldwide economy. EDA is an agency within the U.S. Department of Commerce that partners with distressed communities throughout the United States to foster job creation, collaboration and innovation.