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Boston's Research Universities: $7 Billion for Area Economy

March 27, 2003

Taken collectively, the eight research universities located in the greater Boston area pump more than $7 billion into the economy each year according to a recent report entitled "Engines of Economic Growth." The eight institutions -- Boston College, Boston University, Brandeis University, Harvard, MIT, Northeastern University, Tufts University, and the University of Massachusetts at Boston -- employ more people than does the financial services industry in the metropolitan area.

According to the report, these research universities have provided a source of stability during recent economic events, as they are less susceptible to downturns than other industries. In fact, their direct and indirect employment amounts to more than 85,000 people, and they have added 2000 employees to their payrolls in the past two years. Furthermore, spending on construction projects in the next four years is expected to average as much as $850 million annually, in addition to purchases of goods and services, which accounted for approximately $1.3 billion in 2000.

All of the schools are located within a 9-mile radius of the Massachusetts state capital and are defined as institutions that grant doctoral degrees and spend at least $10 million annually on research. A New York based consulting firm prepared the full report on behalf of the universities.

Tufts president Lawrence Bacow told a Boston Chamber of Commerce meeting, "We believe that our future economic well being as a region is tied to continuing investments in education, research, and development."

Copies of the full report is available through the Web site of the Association of Independent Colleges and Universities in Massachusetts.