University Research Programs and Centers

Resource Guide

2000 University Ave.
Muncie, Indiana  47306
(800) 382-8540

Building Better Communities (BBC)
(765) 285-2773

Building Better Communities provides one-stop service to partners across Indiana by connecting them with Ball State University expertise and resources that help solve local problems. Through customized efforts, our work results in stronger businesses, improved communities, and more efficient government agencies. 

Immersive learning is the hallmark of a Ball State education. Student driven teams work with communities, businesses, and government agencies to develop real-world solutions to real-world problems. Building Better Communities is Ball State’s front door for community partners seeking to benefit from bright, passionate students’ immersive learning projects.

In addition to immersive learning, Building Better Communities offers strategic planning, research, consulting, subject-matter experts, and training.

Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER)
(765) 285-5926

The Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) is the main research unit within the College of Business at Ball State University.  The Center works with businesses and governments to assist them in their research and information needs.

College of Architecture and Planning, Indianapolis Center
(317) 822-6167

CAP:IC is part of a diverse family of design centers nationwide. Some are associated with universities while others are independent non-profit organizations. Design centers take on a wide array of purposes. Some focus primarily on advocacy and community-building. Others do actual design and planning that result in construction documents and plans that are built. CAP:IC falls somewhere in the middle with a mix of advocacy, community building, and facilitating conceptual design and planning.

Plastics Research and Education Center
(765) 285-5695 

The plastics center uses the resources of Ball State University to address the needs of the plastics industry in Indiana.  The vision is to have the targeted region recognized as a global leader in the plastics industry.  The mission is to provide strategies and support implementation of those strategies in order to create a substantial and sustainable advantage for plastics companies.

200 N. Seventh St.
Terre Haute, Indiana  47809

Business Engagement Center
(812) 237-2536

Engaging with business to provide university commercialization services and experimental learning opportunities.

Center for Public Support & Community Engagement
(812) 237-2334

The Center for Community Engagement was established to serve as a "front door" to Indiana State University. Our purpose is to enhance the quality of life in the Wabash Valley and State of Indiana by providing opportunities for nonprofit and profit organizations, governmental agencies, and citizens to access the service and programs of the University. We also provide individual support for students, staff, and faculty who are interested in community engagement projects.

107 S. Indiana Ave.
Bloomington, Indiana  47405
(812) 855-4848

IBRC (Indiana Business Research Center)
(812) 855-5507 -or- (317) 274-2979

Established in 1925, the Indiana Business Research Center is an integral unit in the Kelley School of Business at Indiana University. The IBRC provides and interprets the economic information needed by the state’s business, government and nonprofit organizations, as well as users of such information throughout the nation.

The IBRC maintains databases on numerous topics such as income, employment, taxes, sectors of the economy, education, demographics and a host of other economic indicators for the nation, the state and local areas. In addition, the Center conducts original research to generate needed information when existing data are not available or sufficient.

The many web sites developed and maintained by the IBRC include:

50 West Fall Creek Parkway North Drive
Indianapolis, IN  46208
(317) 921-4800

Center for Workforce Development-Office of Business and Industry Training
Serves industry, small business, government, and non-profit agencies in analyzing training needs, assessing employees’ skill levels, and recommending and implementing optimal training programs.

West Lafayette, Indiana  47907
(765) 494-4600

Center for Rural Development 
(765) 494-4191

The Center was established to bring university resources together to: assist public and private sectors as they work toward solving rural development problems; provide a range of educational programs; coordinate and support research that improves understanding of economic and community development issues; and, provide issue-relevant information to individuals and groups interested in rural development.    

Cooperative Extension Service
(765) 494-7273

Four programs exist within the umbrella of the Cooperative Extension Service, including:

  • Agriculture and Natural Resources Program Providing lifelong education, training, and technical assistance to people and businesses with agricultural and natural resource related interests.
  • Leadership and Community Development
  • Consumer and Family Sciences Informal education program that increases knowledge, influences attitudes, teaches skills, and inspired aspirations.   
  • 4-H and Youth - 4-H incorporates fun educational opportunities, development of leadership skills, and adult training with hands-on, age appropriate, university-based activities.

Indiana Manufacturing Extension Partnership Center
(317) 275-6810 or (800) 877-5182

Formerly known as the Indiana Business Modernization and Technology Corporation (BMT), the MEP center is now under the direction of Purdue University’s Technical Assistance Program (TAP). Its aim is to provide Indiana manufacturers with the resources they need to adapt to the changing technological requirements in the manufacturing sector.

Purdue Center for Regional Development (PCRD)
(765) 494-7273

The Purdue Center for Regional Development (PCRD) supports collaborative regional and multi-institutional approaches to problem solving and development.  Some core competencies include: Regional Analysis and Planning; Economic Development Planning; New Models of Workforce Development; Small Business Development; Community/Regional Entrepreneurship Development; Rural and Small Town Community and Economic Development; Civic Leadership/Governance; and GIS and Spatial Techniques and Analysis.

Technical Assistance Program (TAP)
(765) 494-9189

TAP is designed to help Indiana business, industry, and government use the resources of Purdue University in order to develop and implement new technologies for the economic benefit of clients and the state.

If you are aware of any university research programs or centers that we may have omitted, please e-mail Jes Beals to let us know.


Building Better Communities
Carmichael Hall (CA), room 104
Ball State University
Muncie, Indiana 47306

Hours: Monday-Friday 8 a.m.-5 p.m.
Summer hours: 7:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Phone: 765-285-2773
Fax: 765-285-4989
View E-mail Address