The Center was formally established in 2005. It was launched for the purpose of helping communities and counties address some of the key social and economic challenges and opportunities that might be better addressed from a regional perspective.
In many respects, working regionally demands a new way of thinking and acting. It requires a willingness on the part of people, organizations and institutions to work together in ways that transcend traditional geopolitical boundaries. A good example is a group of 4-5 counties that have come together to create and implement a coordinated regional economic development blueprint—one that builds on the region's competitive economic assets.
Since PCRD is an integral part of Purdue's land-grant university activities, it does carry out a good part of its activities in the state of Indiana. However, its signature programs are being delivered and implemented in regions across the U.S. and in a handful of international sites. Thus, it does conduct its work beyond the geographic boundaries of Indiana.
PCRD receives core funding from Purdue University. At the same time, Center faculty and staff have been successful in securing extramural funding from a number of sources, including federal agencies, state government units, foundations, nonprofit organizations, universities and private sector entities.
In a nutshell, the goals of the Center are fivefold: (1) Develop Data for Decision-Makers, (2) Strengthen Collaborative Leadership in Regions, (3) Promote Regional Planning and Strategy Development, (4) Advance Economic Development and Business Growth Strategies, and (5)Tap the Talents of Purdue Faculty and Staff to Help Respond to Regional Needs. Visit our Mission & Goals for more information.
The Center has a rich history of working with a number of regional organizations. In the state of Indiana, these groups include the Indiana Association of Regional Councils, the Indiana Economic Development Association, the Indiana Department of Workforce Development regions, the Office of Community and Rural Affairs (OCRA) and more. Counties exploring the formation of a new regional organization are welcome to seek the assistance of PCRD as well.
PCRD has a strong partnership with the leadership of the College of Agriculture’s Extension system, including administrators, faculty, staff and regional/county educators who are working in the Economic and Community Development program area. Purdue Extension is a critical delivery network that is being tapped by PCRD to help understand and respond to the unique needs of local and regional stakeholders.
PCRD was designated as the Indiana EDA University Center in 2007 by the Economic Development Administration (EDA), U.S. Department of Commerce. As an EDA Center, PCRD seeks to tap the resources, expertise and technologies available at Purdue University to assist in stimulating industrial, technological and commercial growth in economically distressed areas of Indiana.
PCRD is proud to be formally linked to two SBDCs in the state—the Hoosier Heartland SBDC located on the Purdue University West Lafayette campus and the Southeast SBDC in New Albany. At the same time, PCRD maintains a strong working partnership with Indiana’s Office of Small Business and Entrepreneurship, the state agency that coordinates the network of 10 regional SBDC offices in the state.
PCRD is part of the University Office of Engagement, and as such, has the opportunity to partner with a wide array of departments and units. We are actively collaborating with the Office of the Vice President for Public Affairs, Discovery Park, Purdue Extension, the Technical Assistance Program (TAP), the Military Families Research Center, the Purdue Research Foundation, the Office of Global Affairs, the Department of Agricultural Economics, the Department of Technology Innovation and Leadership, the Department of Civil Engineering, the Department of Food Science, the Department of Forestry and Natural Resources and the College of Health and Human Sciences.