Helping Communities Shine

Whether researching and implementing ways to shape a community's economic development plan or partnering to create ways to put people to work, CREC connects researchers and policymakers with:

     • Data training
     • Custom portfolios that aid regional competitiveness

Project Profile

Building a Stronger State-Federal Partnership

National Institute of Standards & Technology – Manufacturing Extension Partnership
Start Date: Oct 2002 — End Date: Jun 2019

CREC worked with several partners, including the State Science & Technology Institute, to develop a strong support structure for the Manufacturing Extension Partnership (NIST MEP) program to help manufacturers become globally competitive. CREC has facilitated numerous focus group sessions and conducted one-on-one sessions, connecting NIST officials with key state policy leaders, to create greater understanding among state technology officials about how NIST MEP programs might be most effectively implemented in partnership with the states.  Built on the agricultural extension model, the U.S. Congress created NIST MEP in the late 1980s to address the challenges of global competition and to provide access to state-of-the-art knowledge about technical and management techniques for application in small and medium-sized manufacturing facilities.

Through its work with the NIST Manufacturing Extension Partnership, in 2014 CREC worked with the Illinois Manufacturing Excellence Center (IMEC) to produce several value-chain maps for key industries that had been targeted as part of the Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity’s Illinois Economic Development Plan. IMEC plans to use these value-chain maps to inform matchmaking events and provide sourcing assistance for Illinois-based manufacturers.

Research & PlanningTechnical Assistance

About the Client

National Institute of Standards & Technology – Manufacturing Extension Partnership

The Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership (MEP) is a program of regional centers that assist, smaller, U.S.-based manufacturing companies in identifying and adopting new technologies. MEP operates under the auspices of the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) – a non-regulatory measuring standards laboratory housed within the U.S. Department of Commerce.

Project Updates

CREC Attends SSTI & NIST-MEP Kickoff Meeting in Gaithersburg, Maryland
July 27, 2016

Ken Poole and Catherine Katona met SSTI President, Dan Berglund, and NIST-MEP Director, Carroll Thomas, and the MEP team to kickoff another 5-year cooperative agreement with CREC in Gaithersburg, Maryland.