RTCC: The Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster (RTCC) is an industry-funded, nonprofit initiative of business, government, academic, and nonprofit leaders focused on accelerating cleantech innovation and economic growth in the Research Triangle region. RTCC’s vision is to create cleaner communities through cleantech innovation and adoption.
DELIVERABLE: A research report that characterizes the firms located within North Carolina’s Research Triangle region that are engaged in cleantech. The research will define industry verticals, interrelation of industries, and describe which industries are dynamic and growing.
COMPENSATION: Fee to be determined. Please contact Susan Sanford with questions and if you have interest: firstname.lastname@example.org, 919-334-4078.
PROJECT DESCRIPTION: The Research Triangle Cleantech Cluster is seeking to hire an experienced economic analyst/consultant with proficiency in the cleantech sector to complete a follow-on study to initial taxonomy research completed in 2013. Alternatively, this research may be provided through service learning via faculty and graduate students. This research would uncover new and growing sub-industries in the region. A successful product will substantively:
- Consolidate “general knowledge” of the cleantech industry in the region
- Update the list of firms in the smart energy vertical and in RTCC’s prior taxonomy report
- Describe the core strengths of the region, including basic capabilities of firms in subindustries
- Describe where local firms fit in the value chain
- Illustrate value chain linkages across cleantech verticals
- Describe near-term trends, i.e., which industries are growing and shrinking
- Inventory the firms in the cleantech industry in the 13-county Research Triangle region
- Assign the firms to technology categories; count the number, employment, and sales of firms
- Describe public and private supporting institutions and assets for top three, industry verticals.
BACKGROUND: RTCC is a 501(c)6 not-for-profit organization. RTCC’s primary source of revenue is membership dues. RTCC was established as a marketing organization in 2013 to market the Research Triangle region as a global destination for cleantech innovation. In 2016, RTCC’s membership model expanded to enable tiers of membership to welcome organizations of different sizes and stages of growth. This “larger tent” elicited different value propositions for organizations to be part of RTCC, i.e., wherein multinational firms funded the marketing and talent attraction mission, smaller corporations have expressed interest in business development with other members and organizations in the region.
The 2019-2021 EDA RiS grant provided framework for RTCC to expand its work toward convening and soft, project facilitation through developing a NC Cleantech Corridor—convening local governments to brainstorm on their energy needs with RTCC members and utilities in the room to hear firsthand the “aggregate voice of the customer.”
By January 2021, RTCC will have identified strategies to replace the EDA funding either with increased membership revenue—a function of a highly-articulated, value proposition—and/or with public funds in the form of a grant or ideally, state, legislative allocation.