Campus News

University Launches Economic Development Collaborative

photo of Guoqiang Yu and Chong Huang
Guoqiang Yu (left) and Chong Huang are UK inventors who utilize the UK Office of Technology Commercialization, a member of the UK Economic Development Collaborative, to advance their innovation. Mark Cornelison | UK Photo.

LEXINGTON, Ky. (Nov. 27, 2019) — Today, the University of Kentucky has officially launched the UK Economic Development Collaborative (EDC) to set the strategy moving forward on how UK will address economic development in the areas of talent, innovation, place and partnership. The EDC will also play an advisory role for the economic development engagement areas charged with executing on UK’s strategies.

Members of the EDC include UK leadership from academia and administration across the campus including a vice provost, four college deans, Student and Academic Life, Philanthropy, Purchasing, HealthCare, Athletics, Human Resources, Research, Information Technology Services and six economic engagement areas listed below.

"UK serves as a powerful economic engine for Kentucky — not only by educating the next generation of citizens, but through partnerships with businesses and industries that strengthen Kentucky’s economy and improve the lives of its residents," said UK President Eli Capilouto. "The Economic Development Collaborative brings all of our leadership across campus together to optimize the economic impact of UK and its many missions. We are committed to further connecting the creative research, development and entrepreneurial spirit on our campus into tangible solutions in our communities."

“Dr. Capilouto has challenged the EDC to think boldly and to assemble the resources necessary to execute UK’s economic development strategies,” said George Ward, executive director of the Coldstream Research Campus. “The diverse brain power we have assembled is committed to meet this challenge and help the university achieve its strategic goals long into the future.”

The new EDC website is the access point for both internal and external stakeholders and offers comprehensive solutions for UK’s students, innovators, entrepreneurs and industry partners. It will serve as the university's primary source of information on programs, projects, initiatives and resources related to economic development at UK.

The six economic development engagement areas of the university highlighted on the new website include the following:

For more information on the UK Economic Development Collaborative, visit or contact George Ward at

The University of Kentucky is increasingly the first choice for students, faculty and staff to pursue their passions and their professional goals. In the last two years, Forbes has named UK among the best employers for diversity, and INSIGHT into Diversity recognized us as a Diversity Champion four years running. UK is ranked among the top 30 campuses in the nation for LGBTQ* inclusion and safety. UK has been judged a “Great College to Work for" three years in a row, and UK is among only 22 universities in the country on Forbes' list of "America's Best Employers."  We are ranked among the top 10 percent of public institutions for research expenditures — a tangible symbol of our breadth and depth as a university focused on discovery that changes lives and communities. And our patients know and appreciate the fact that UK HealthCare has been named the state’s top hospital for five straight years. Accolades and honors are great. But they are more important for what they represent: the idea that creating a community of belonging and commitment to excellence is how we honor our mission to be not simply the University of Kentucky, but the University for Kentucky.