Western Illinois University seeks to create the new Center for Manufacturing and Entrepreneurial Excellence (CMEE) to advance community and economic development in the Quad Cities region and in rural communities across the state. CMEE will have two locations, the Quad Cities Innovation Center (QCIC) and Macomb's Community Innovation Center (CIC). These two centers will form one community and economic development park, modeled after the success of Chicago's 1871, with the purpose of promoting and strengthening the empirically based, global economy of the 21st century.

The QCIC will seek to drive innovation, workforce development and economic growth in the Quad Cities’ three leading sectors of manufacturing, defense, and agriculture. It will utilize technology roadmaps and playbooks to advance regional manufacturing needs in robotics, augmented and virtual reality, big data, and additive manufacturing. The CIC uses data analytics, visualization, and artificial intelligence at the community level across Illinois to improve economies, communities, and overall quality of life in rural Illinois. Our partners provide proven community and economic development solutions to all 102 Illinois counties.

Hub contact: Chris Merrett