The Daily Beast uses our research to write about University Cities, with Mayor Jim Gray’s corporate move to Lexington as an example of the trend:
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At the Annual Conference of the University Economic Development Association next week, I’ll be giving a talk on the impact of universities on their cities…beyond just jobs and research dollars. The network effects of having a major public research university in the center of one’s city have outcomes you would expect…including an arts and culture sector that rivals the nation’s largest cities. And there are outcomes you might not expect, like incredibly low violent crime rates.
The city council in Fort Collins, a University City, voted to be carbon neutral by 2050.
UniversityCities.org seeks to explore the concept of University Cities. These cities — there are six of them — have outgrown their college-town status and created dynamic economies around the major research universities at their center. It turns out that these cities are quite different from others, sharing DNA that naturally produces highly educated workforces, out-sized arts and cultural sectors, big-city entrepreneurial activity and very low violent crime rates, all with a low cost of living. In short, these are cities built perfectly for the knowledge economy.
The cities are: Ann Arbor, Durham, Fort Collins, Lexington, Lincoln and Madison. Each fits the criteria: a city and MSA population between 250,000 and 1 million, a major research university in its urban core, and students making up at least 10 percent of the population.
This new species of city has not been identified and studied…until now. The office of Lexington Mayor Jim Gray started the project with the hopes of engaging the other five cities.