Comprehensive examination of the relationship between higher education, state government, and economic development. Local, state, and national economies are facing unprecedented levels of international competition. The current fiscal crisis has hampered the ability of many governments in the developed world to directly facilitate economic growth. At the same time, many governments in the developing world are investing significant new resources into local infrastructure and industry development initiatives. At the heart of the current economic transformation lie our colleges and universities. Through their roles in education, innovation, knowledge transfer, and community engagement, these institutions are working toward spurring economic growth and prosperity. This book brings together leading scholars from a variety of disciplines to assess how universities and colleges exert impact on economic growth. The contributors consider various methodologies, metrics, and data sources that may be used to gauge the performance of diverse higher education institutions in improving economic outcomes in the United States and around the world. Also presented are new typologies of economic development activities and related state policies that are designed to improve understanding of such initiatives and generate new energy and focus for an international community of scholars and practitioners working to formulate new models for how public universities and colleges may lead economic development in their states and communities while still performing their traditional educational functions. Colleges and Universities as Economic Drivers is meant to cultivate greater understanding among elected officials, business representatives, policymakers, and other concerned parties about the central roles universities and colleges play in national, state, and local economies.