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Our activities and expertise focus on the following areas:

A. Applied Economic Analysis
The Center works with other units on campus to provide a variety of applied economic research services to the public and private sectors.  These are discrete analytical activities generally done on a contract basis, though as the Center evolves pro bono work will also be done. The Institute offers unbiased analysis that is consistent with the academic ideals of Portland State University.  The NERC network includes experts in the following areas: 

  • Regional economic analysis
  • Economic impact analysis
  • Analysis related to economic development,
    including indicators
  • Economic forecasting and modeling
  • Analysis of fiscal impacts
  • Competitiveness analysis
  • Feasibility studies
  • Firm-specific studies
  • Industry studies and market research
  • Labor market analyses and projections
  • Land market and tourism research

B. Data Collection and Management
The Center will collaborate with other units at PSU to provide and maintain a wide range of regional economic data. Common data will be available free-of-charge. Other forms will be provided for fees or by subscription.

Data on benchmarks and best practices will be compiled and made available to assist businesses and governments.

C. Outreach and Facilitating Dialogue in the Community

A major reason to establish the Center was to bring Portland State University more formally into a variety of debates and discussions related to regional economic issues. One way to accomplish this goal is to produce authoritative and well-presented applied research and analysis. We will also host a variety of public events that will help shape the dialogue around important issues in the region and state. Examples of such events include:

  • Conferences and workshops related to particular topics.
  • Lectures that are open to everyone.
  • Expert panelists making short presentations and taking questions from the public.

The Center will publish an e-newsletter that focuses on regional economic issues. NERC faculty will also contribute to a regional economics blog.

D. Policy Advising
It is envisioned that faculty members will be asked to provide advice on economic policy issues.  A key goal of the Center is to be responsive to such needs on both formal and informal bases as part of its mission to improve public policy.  Assisting with expert advice is also envisioned as an important aspect of the business development strategy of the Center.