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IEP 2017 Connections Award Winner
Projects & Initiatives

Innovation & Economic Prosperity Universities

APLU Impact

  • The IEP program recognizes institutions that have demonstrated a meaningful, ongoing and substantial commitment to economic and community development, growth, and economic opportunity.
  • Institutions complete a rigorous self-assessment to identify the strengths of the university’s economic engagement enterprise and areas for growth and improvement—all while sharing and learning from peers and experts across North America.
  • Earning the designation is just the beginning—designees are eligible to apply for the IEP University Awards given in the categories of Talent, Innovation, and Place. Institutions continue to share, learn, and engage through annual research, projects, and events.

APLU and its Commission on Economic and Community Engagement (CECE) established the Innovation and Economic Prosperity (IEP) Universities Program to help higher education institutions codify, elevate, and advance their campus enterprise supporting economic and community development. The designation recognizes institutions that have demonstrated a meaningful, ongoing and substantial commitment to economic and community development, growth, and economic opportunity.

The IEP Universities program helps institutions to codify, elevate and advance their "economic engagement" enterprise which encompasses the many and varied ways universities work with their public-private partners to carry out:

  • Talent and workforce development
  • Innovation, entrepreneurship and technology-based economic development
  • Place development through public service, outreach, extension, and community engagement

More than 60 institutions have earned this distinguished recognition. IEP University designees complete a rigorous self-study of their economic engagement enterprise that allows them to inventory their true societal and economic impact while identifying strengths and areas of improvement in economic engagement. They exchange ideas, best practices and shared challenges with like-minded peers across North America with a goal of strengthening their ecosystem promoting regional economic prosperity and community development.

The IEP Universities program was developed by APLU's Commission on Economic and Community Engagement (CECE), convening chief economic and community engagement officers as well as presidents and chancellors, provosts, senior research officers, government and public affairs leaders, and other administrators with responsibility for planning, executing, or communicating their institution's work in economic and community engagement. Learn more and join CECE today. Questions regarding the IEP universities program? Contact the IEP program director, Shalin Jyotishi.

Learn more:

Featured Project & Initiative

Economic Development & Engagement
A set of core ideas to help universities focus efforts not only on telling their economic engagement story well, but also growing, improving, and advancing their economic engagement enterprise and thereby accelerating economic development in their regions, nationally, and globally.

Featured Project & Initiative

Courtesy of North Carolina State University
Economic Development & Engagement
Education for employment upon graduation is important, but a four-year degree should also put graduates in a better position to adapt as employment requirements change throughout their careers.