Economic Growth Institute creates new center as part of Global Epicenter of Mobility initiative

September 15, 2022

The University of Michigan Economic Growth Institute, part of a team awarded $52.2 million, plans to create an advanced mobility supply chain transformation center to support small and medium-sized manufacturers as they transition to the electric vehicle market.

It’s part of the Global Epicenter of Mobility, or GEM, initiative announced recently and $5.33 million goes toward the institute’s work in helping the state’s manufacturers as they transition to serving the new mobility industry.

“The funds will support a new center, the Supply Chain Transformation Center,” said Parker Finn, assistant director of the Economic Growth Institute. “The funding is vital to making this program happen. Bringing these resources to the region can help manufacturers invest in new technologies, develop their organization and plan for the future. This center, like many of our program models, will provide matching funds to businesses to help them address specific needs.”

The $52.2 million grant from the U.S. Economic Development Administration’s Build Back Better Regional Challenge will support five other projects submitted under the GEM initiative, designed to accelerate economic growth by building on the region’s mobility assets. GEM will create a smart, secure, sustainable and inclusive advanced-mobility industry, starting with the transition to next-generation electric, autonomous and fully connected vehicles.

GEM Coalition partner logos

Other co-recipients of the grant funding the six projects are Detroit Regional Partnership, state of Michigan’s Office of Future Mobility and Electrification, Southeast Michigan Community Alliance and TechTown.

The GEM Coalition was one of 21 awardees receiving grants between $25 million and $65 million to bolster economic transformation and competitiveness.

“The businesses we engage with are run by accomplished and capable people. There are challenges across the supply chain, but collaborative work, guidance and planning can go a long way,” said Steve Wilson, executive director of the Economic Growth Institute. “This kind of work can really make a difference, and it’s an important piece of the GEM initiative across the Detroit region.”