Accelerate Arkansas

About Accelerate Arkansas
Accelerate Arkansas is a statewide group of 60 business and education leaders committed to building a competitive, knowledge-based economy in Arkansas with the goal of achieving parity in per capita income with the U.S. average by 2020. Once attained, approximately $2.4 billion in additional tax revenue will be created for the state on an annual basis.

Mission
The mission of the organization is to foster economic growth in Arkansas by using the essential building blocks of the knowledge-based economy, and to create an environment supporting entrepreneurship and continuous innovation.

Five Core Strategies

Support job-creating research.
Develop risk capital that is available for all stages of the business cycle, especially the fundind gap.
Encourage entrepreneurship and accelerated new enterprise development.
Increase the education level of Arkasas in science, technology, engineering and math.
Sustain existing industry through advancing technology and competitiveness.
Strategic plan
This 134-page document describes the group’s recommendations for policy changes in Arkansas that it feels will allow the state to build and accelerate its knowledge-based industries.

The plan is a result of more than 5,500 hours and two years of work from more than 200 Arkansans, almost all of whom were volunteers.
Contributions to the plan came from the following groups:
Accelerate Arkansas executive committee and strategic planning committee (October 2005);
All members of Accelerate Arkansas (November 2005);
Regional business leaders (March and April 2006);
Subject matter experts (April 2006).
The process resulted in more than 700 recommendations. From this, Accelerate Arkansas developed five core strategies and 30 recommendations, which are outlined in the plan.
This study was funded by the Winthrop Rockefeller Foundation. This is the second Winthrop Rockefeller grant received by Accelerate Arkansas.
UALR’s Institute for Economic Advancement research report, Closing the Gap, also played an important role in helping complete the strategic plan.