If you trace the origins of Georgia’s largest university-based research projects, you’ll likely find the Georgia Research Alliance (GRA) at an early pivotal point.
That’s because GRA has brokered hundreds of “deals” on behalf of the state’s research universities. Since 1990, GRA has helped recruit scores of world-renowned scientists, called Georgia Research Alliance Eminent Scholars®, and helped fuel the launch of more than 150 companies. GRA has also served as a key catalyst for two dozen centers of research excellence – university-based enterprises that serve as magnets for scientists and federal research dollars.
GRA operates as an independent not-for-profit entity governed by leaders from industry and academia. While GRA receives a state appropriation for investment in university-based research opportunities, its small staff and lean operations are funded through foundation and industry contributions.
GRA is not a pass-through organization; it actually engineers opportunities that have the potential to drive a substantial return on the state’s investment. Often, GRA assumes the role of connecting key individuals and organizations with mutual interests – and with the ability to make an impact through research. More on how we work >
The driving factor in all of GRA’s opportunity creation is economic growth.
In its first 19 years, GRA leveraged $525 million in state funding into $2.6 billion of additional federal and private investment. Along the way, GRA’s entrepreneurial efforts have helped create thousands of high-skill, high-wage jobs. The efforts of the Alliance have drawn wide interest from other states seeking to capitalize on the Alliance’s talent–infrastructure investment model.
But GRA’s impact transcends economics. The Alliance has played a key role in building a reputation for Georgia as a center of discovery and invention, as evidenced by several major advances in science, medicine and technology. In 2007, GRA coalesced the strengths of several universities into a focused research effort built around new types of vaccines and therapeutics. As a result, Georgia is now leveraging these strengths and embarking on a major initiative to explore new ways to marshal the human immune system to fight disease.
GRA’s history is proof positive of the impact derived from investment in university-based research. Its future promises to take this impact to a whole new level.