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RNTA Current Projects

The following list includes current RNTA projects. For completed research and tools, please reference the EDA Research Reports and the Tools for Economic Development. To learn more about these RNTA projects, please contact rnta@eda.gov.

Research and Evaluation Projects

  1. American Resilience & Equity Networks Initiative (ARENI)

    Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University, University Economic Development Association (UEDA)
    The goal of this initiative is to establish networks of University Centers, diverse higher education institutions, and regional ecosystem partners that will promote resiliency and equity. These networks will identify and elevate successful projects as resources in regional economic development while also connecting participants to best practices through regular convenings, online forums, and resource libraries. The initiative will also bolster EDA’s already successful University Center program through fostering enhanced networking and collaboration opportunities for current, and aspiring, EDA University Centers. For more information, please view the award announcement and ARENI website.
  2. Argonne National Laboratory

    Argonne National Laboratory
    Through this partnership, the Argonne National Laboratory will help EDA develop a data driven understanding of impacts from current grants and identify future areas of opportunities for funding through analysis of current economic conditions.
  3. Advancing Economic Development in Persistently Poor Communities

    Economic Innovation Group (EIG)
    This project aims to understand why certain types of places remain persistently poor and chronically under-developed.  EIG will identify and analyze areas of persistent poverty in the United States, develop a typology of persistently poor places based on their needs to better inform future policy approaches, and assess how effective past EDA investments have been in alleviating deprivation in areas suffering from persistent poverty. For more information, please view the award announcement.
  4. Enhancing Rural Innovation

    Rural Community Assistance Partnership (RCAP), Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD)
    This project is focused on the need to better understand the drivers of rural innovation, examples of successful regional and rural innovation ecosystems, policies in advanced economies that promote this innovation, and how rural areas are or should be preparing for near-term global economic transformations.
  5. Understanding Impact: EDA Evaluation

    Urban Institute
    This purpose of this project is to conduct a program evaluation of infrastructure and non-infrastructure EDA grants from 2010 – 2019. Using the knowledge from this evaluation, Urban Institute will produce a series of policy briefs highlighting important findings and develop an immersive narrative microsite that supports EDA’s mission.
  6. What Works in Rural: Strategies for Rural Economies in the Age of Automation

    Rural Innovation Strategies, Inc. (RISI)
    This project evaluates the impact of the Rural Innovation Initiative pilot technical assistance program. Accompanying this research, the project team will provide concrete recommendations on how EDA can best move forward with future-focused rural economic development initiatives.

National Technical Assistance Projects

  1. COVID-19 Recovery and Alternative Financing Strategies

    Blueprint Local LLC, Nowak Metro Finance Lab at Drexel University
    This project seeks to develop new, innovative financing models for economic development organizations that do not fit venture capital, nor qualify for a traditional bank loan. Over the course of the project, 6 economic development organizations will receive technical assistance to implement pilots of the models. The project will also develop a national playbook targeted to economic development organizations and entrepreneur support organizations. For more information, please view the award announcement and website.
  2. Economic Future of Nuclear Host Communities Technical Assistance

    Smart Growth America (SGA), Nuclear Decommissioning Collaborative (NDC), NADO Research Foundation (NADO RF), the Center on Creative Land Recycling (CCLR)
    This project funds a technical assistance program to increase issue awareness, build local capacity, and better prepare nuclear closure communities (NCCs) and their economies for a post-nuclear power plant future. For more information, please view their website.
  3. Enhancing State and Local EDO Engagement to Support COVID-19 Recovery and Resiliency

    Center for Regional Economic Competitiveness (CREC), National Association of Development Organizations Research Foundation (NADO - RF), State International Development Organizations (SIDO), Northeast-Midwest Institute (NEMWI)/American Manufacturing Communities Collaborative (AMCC)
    The award will be used to develop best practices in economic development integration and alignment, provide training and other technical assistance to new state economic development staff, and conduct outreach to incorporate international engagement strategies into local comprehensive economic development strategies (CEDS). For more information, please view the award announcement.
  4. Inclusive Development in Economic Development District’s COVID-19 Recovery

    New Growth Innovation Network (NGIN), National Association of Development Organizations Research Foundation (NADO - RF)
    The goal of this project is to provide insights, best practices and training for a National Community of Practice on inclusive economic recovery from coronavirus economic impacts. Over the course of the project, the team will work with six Economic Development Districts (EDDs) to capture insights as they embed economic inclusion and equitable economic strategies into their CEDS coronavirus economic recovery plans. For more information, please view the award announcement and website.
  5. Improving the Capacity of Revolving Loan Fund Recipients

    Institute for Local Self Reliance (ILSR), Recast City
    This project will provide technical assistance to RLF operators to improve their operations and to help with targeting potential borrowers through an Equity and Inclusion lens. For more information, please view the award announcement.
  6. National Economic Development District (EDD) Leadership Capacity Building Initiative

    National Association of Development Organizations Research Foundation (NADO - RF)
    This project focuses on building a national network of Economic Development Leaders. Activities include the creation of an EDD Executive Leadership Curriculum, EDD Executive Leadership Peer Mentoring Exchange, and EDD Emerging Leaders Academy.
  7. Recovery and Resilience Strategies for Pandemics: What We’ve Learned from COVID 19

    International Economic Development Council (IEDC)
    The International Economic Development Council (IEDC) is working to understand and track the success of COVID-19 recovery and relief programs at the local level. They are engaging with 8 communities to learn about the progress of initiatives to assist businesses, maintain or create jobs, or otherwise help economies that have been affected by the global pandemic. The cumulation of this research will be the release of a report with lessons learned from local communities facing the effects of COVID-19.
  8. Stronger CEDS, Stronger Regions

    National Association of Development Organizations Research Foundation (NADO - RF)
    This project focuses on creating resources for the development of CEDS, which focus on strategic planning and resilience. This award has created and continues to maintain the “CEDS Central” website that houses resources including best practices and training documents. For more information, please visit CEDS Central.

Research and National Technical Assistance (RNTA)

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