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University presidents: Invest in Michigan research universities

For every dollar invested in Michigan's three research universities -- Michigan State University, Wayne State University, and the University of Michigan -- the state saw $17 in economic benefit in FY 2010-2011.

That's only one reason why Michigan's research universities are a good investment. Write Mary Sue Coleman, Allan Gilmour, and Lou Anna K. Simon of the URC's $2 billion in annual R&D spending: 

That $2 billion in R&D helps bring talented and creative people to the state, making Michigan a place where people want to live, work and launch new enterprises. Since 2002, the three URC universities have cultivated 149 start-up companies, including 18 in 2011, when the URC ranked behind only Southern California and Massachusetts.
Furthermore, the URC is working to expand the economic benefits it brings to the state. The $15.5 billion in state economic activity the URC contributed in fiscal year 2011 was up $2.6 billion -- 20 percent -- over the 2007 report.
Read the full op-ed here.
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