Study Suggests Research Board Boosts Montana Economy

May 21, 2014

MISSOULA – Montana’s economy has experienced significant impacts from the operations of the Montana Board of Research and Commercialization Technology, including more jobs, higher household incomes and larger tax revenues, according to a study completed by the University of Montana Bureau of Business and Economic Research.

During the past 14 years, MBRCT has produced a larger, more prosperous and more populous state economy than would have existed in its absence, BBER Director Patrick Barkey said. Established in 2000, the board encourages economic development through investment in Montana-based research projects with a clear path to commercialization.

The economic-impact study found that MBRCT operations have produced the following economic outcomes:

  • An average of 459 jobs have been created;
  • More than $315 million was received by Montana households;
  • After-tax household income of Montanans was higher by almost $229 million;
  • Increased gross sales of $718 million were realized by Montana-based business and other organizations; and
  • Tax and non-tax revenues, not including property taxes, were $66 million higher.

In its 14-year history, MBRCT has supported projects in agricultural research, energy and mining research, biotech and medical research, photonics and optics research, and area such as software, bioreactors, carbon dioxide sensors and biomimetic floating islands.

 “Our basic finding is that MBRCT’s operations have had an outsized impact on the state economy,” Barkey said. “By almost any measure, the program’s impacts have been substantial, and it clearly has been a good investment in Montana’s economy.”

BBER’s economic impact study is available at Information about MBRCT is available at

BBER is a research center producing economic and industry data for Montana. For more information visit


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Contact: Patrick Barkey, director, UM Bureau of Business and Economic Research, 406-243-5113,