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Innovation Creates High-Wage Jobs

Research, science, and technology parks are catalysts for job creation, the Association of University Research Parks has found.

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Science, technology, and research parks behind new opportunities

Research, science, and technology parks are catalysts for job creation. As communities look for ways to create jobs and drive economic growth, many are finding innovation to be a key element.

“Research and science parks help grow local, high-tech companies while attracting new ones to the region,” said Harold Strong, Jr., Association of University Research Parks (AURP) President and Director of Discovery Park and Technology Transfer at the University of North Texas. “These parks are impacting their communities in a big way – with high-wage jobs.”

One example of this is the Purdue Research Park Network. According to a recent economic impact study, the park network is responsible for a $1.3 billion annual impact for the State of Indiana and “more than 4,000 high-tech, high-quality jobs paying an average annual salary of $63,000 – 65 percent higher than the Indiana average.”

Indiana isn’t the only community with this kind of success story.

North Dakota State University Research & Technology Park generates $10.9 million annually for local and state governments. And according to a recent economic impact study, the 19 businesses located at the RTP account for 893 direct, on-site jobs and another 551 indirect, off-site jobs.

And the University of Nebraska Technology Park makes an estimated $589.6 million annual impact on the Nebraska economy, according to a recent study by the University of Nebraska–Lincoln Bureau of Business Research. The park also announced that further breakdown of the Technology Park’s economic impact study indicates a $151.3 million labor income impact spread across 4,320 jobs.

Innovation and high-tech economic development projects are key to job creation, says Strong.

In November, the world’s research park executives will convene for the Association of University Research Parks (AURP) 2011 International Conference: Developing the Culture of Innovation and Entrepreneurship in New Orleans, LA. Using innovation as a way to create jobs will be the focus of the event that will feature tours of the BioDistrict New Orleans and the Louisiana State University Innovation Park.

“Our parks are home to the entrepreneurs, small businesses and startups that are key to creating jobs,” said Strong. “We look forward to bringing together the world’s leaders in innovation and high-tech economic development to find ways to bring new jobs to our communities and drive economic growth.”