Skip to main content

Who we are

The Regional Research Institute at West Virginia University is an internationally recognized center for the advancement of Regional Science – an interdisciplinary field at the intersection of geography, economics, and planning.

For more than five decades, the Institute has conducted and promoted interdisciplinary research on economic and social development in lagging regions, engaging in research on social and economic issues that are best addressed at the regional level and how best to match regional development policy to regional context. Regional scientists use quantitative methods and mathematical models to study economic and social phenomena in a regional setting.

We have a core of regional science faculty within the Institute, Faculty Research Associates across campus representing twelve departments and five colleges, an extended network of scholars throughout the United States and abroad, and an outstanding group of graduate students.

Our mission is to promote scholarly research focusing on theories and history of regional development, methods for studying regions, and policies for stimulating their development. We seek to advance understanding of socioeconomic processes and our ability to explain regional differences in rates of growth and levels of development. RRI activities are both national and international in scope. Our interests span the globe, with a special focus on our own Appalachian region.

We invite you to browse our site and to contact us to explore the possibilities of becoming a member of our regional research community.