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Sponsored Research

The Regional Research Institute occupies a unique position on the WVU campus. While limited in research staff, its activities and influence extend across a large number of disciplines, colleges and research units. 

All RRI staff members are expected to participate in external funding activities, including the preparation and submission of external funding proposals and the conduct of funded research. The RRI strives to include faculty from across campus in collaborative research proposals initiated in-house and also participates, whenever appropriate and possible, in initiatives centered elsewhere. Likewise, we seek to build relationships with researchers from other institutions, including continuing collaborations with scholars at other institutions, which have included the University of Pittsburgh, Carnegie-Mellon University, Georgia Institute of Technology, the University of Washington, George Mason University, Florida International University, Pennsylvania State University, Virginia Polytechnic Institute, Arizona State University, the National Energy Technology Laboratory, the University of Maine, and Marshall University.

EnergyWise West Virginia (WV) Plan

Collaborators: WVU Office of Sustainability and Energy Research, WVU Department of Biology, West Virginia Office of Energy, Marshall University, IN-2-Market

Start Date: October 1, 2023

End Date: September 30, 2027

Funding: $697,915 to WVU from the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) under a subcontract from the West Virginia Office of Energy

Project Summary: The RRI is leading the WVU portion of the analysis for the EnergyWise WV Plan, which will quantify greenhouse gas (GHG) pollution emissions in the state of West Virginia and identify potential GHG reduction measures. The RRI's roll involves evaluating the workforce and economic impacts of the GHG reduction policies, including their impacts on low income and disadvantaged communities.

Factors Affecting the Success of Female and Minority Rural Entrepreneurs and Rural Economic Vitality

Collaborators: Pennsylvania State University, The University of Maine, West Virginia University Extension

Start Date: May 15, 2023

End Date: May 14, 2026

Funding: $649,913 from the United States Department of Agriculture, National Institute of Food and Agriculture

Project Summary: The objective of this project is to identify the factors associated with higher shares of women and minority entrepreneurs and their relationship with local economic prosperity at the county level, with a focus on rural areas. The project will further use firm-level micro-data to determine the factors relevant to the success or failure (survivability and profitability analysis) of rural women and minority entrepreneurs. The findings will then be translated into Extension and other outreach educational programing for entrepreneurial support organizations and local officials to build the capacity of rural communities to improve entrepreneurship by women, minorities, and other social disadvantaged groups in order to promote rural prosperity.