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SSTI receives EDA award to launch Tech-based Economic Development Community of Practice focused on EDA grantees

October 13, 2022

SSTI is pleased to announce a new project with the Economic Development Administration (EDA) to build a Community of Practice focused on EDA’s important technology-based economic development (TBED) investment priority area. This new partnership will help regions across the entire country become more resilient, more equitable, and more competitive in the global innovation-centered economy.

SSTI and EDA’s shared mission for this community is to improve the impacts, outcomes and effectiveness of EDA’s strategic investments in local and regional capacity to support science, technology, innovation and entrepreneurship.

“Technology is changing the face of the global economy and technology-based economic development is among EDA’s key investment priorities,” said Alejandra Y. Castillo, Assistant Secretary of Commerce for Economic Development in a statement announcing the award. “The TBED CoP will advance an ideal synthesis of vision and practice to foster entrepreneurship and catalyze innovation.”

EDA’s four-year investment and collaboration with SSTI will enable the nation’s TBED community to grow in new ways, extending the benefits of the innovation economy to new pockets of the country, enabling new urban-rural connections and building equitable pathways for growth that will open greater economic opportunities to more Americans.

“America is facing an incredible array of structural economic challenges due to the impacts of the pandemic, inequality, global competition, and climate change,” said Dan Berglund, President and CEO of SSTI. “The new TBED CoP will meet the need of EDA grantees for a resource that will work to improve their impacts and expand their capacities by identifying and disseminating effective practices, building inter-organizational networks, developing staff knowledge and skills, and forming partnerships with new stakeholders.”

In building the TBED Community of Practice, SSTI will work with EDA and its stakeholders to:

  • identify and share best practices;
  • foster collaboration among EDA grantees;
  • facilitate greater communication with external partners; and,
  • emphasize the integration of EDA’s other investment priorities in TBED projects.

Support available through the Community of Practice will include technical assistance, education and networking to assist EDA grantees in building their capacities and multiplying their impacts. While SSTI will leverage its significant experience and substantial network to provide many of these services directly, the Community of Practice also will provide space for grantees to collaborate with peer groups that share their specific perspectives, activities and priorities.

EDA makes substantial investments in TBED-related projects across multiple funding programs. These include projects that: strengthen entrepreneurs and new businesses; accelerate the development of new technologies; and, facilitate capital access for tech-focused companies. These awards have been concentrated within the Build to Scale program but are increasingly present within Economic Adjustment Assistance projects. By working to support grantees across these investment priorities, the TBED Community of Practice will provide effective and consistent assistance to a large portion of EDA’s awardees.

SSTI will also partner with the Association of University Research Parks to implement aspects of the TBED CoP related to working with research parks.

Details on how to get involved with the TBED Community of Practice are forthcoming. In the meantime, individuals can sign up here to receive updates or contact SSTI’s Jason Rittenberg [rittenberg@ssti.org] with questions.


This article was prepared by SSTI using Federal funds under award ED22HDQ3070129 from the Economic Development Administration, U.S. Department of Commerce. The statements, findings, conclusions, and recommendations are those of the author(s) and do not necessarily reflect the views of the Economic Development Administration or the U.S. Department of Commerce.

ssti, tbed, eda, awards