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University Communications

John Krauss
Public Policy Institute

Last modified: Thursday, December 11, 2008

IU Center for Urban Policy and the Environment receives $2 million grant from Lilly Endowment

Grant will advance research in housing, land use policy, as well as government reform and economic development

Dec. 11, 2008

INDIANAPOLIS -- Indiana University President Michael A. McRobbie announced today (Dec. 11) that Lilly Endowment Inc. has awarded the university $2 million over three years to support the IU Center for Urban Policy and the Environment and its work through the IU Public Policy Institute.

The Center for Urban Policy and the Environment is one of three research centers operating under the Indianapolis-based IU Public Policy Institute, which also includes the Center for Health Policy and the Center for Criminal Justice Research.

"This support confirms that the Center for Urban Policy and the Environment and the Public Policy Institute are playing a very important role in securing Indiana's future by providing sound, solid research and academic expertise on matters of policy," McRobbie said. "We are grateful that Lilly Endowment has once again demonstrated its generosity in a way that will pay substantial dividends for the state."

The IU Center for Urban Policy and the Environment, established in 1992, works with state and local governments and their associations, neighborhood and community organizations, community leaders, and business and civic organizations to identify policy issues, analyze options and develop strategic plans for responding to challenges.

The IU Public Policy Institute, affiliated with IU's School of Public and Environmental Affairs (SPEA), was created in May 2008 and draws on the expertise of faculty members and professional staff at Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis and IU Bloomington. Its mission is to provide leaders in business, government, academia, philanthropy and nonprofit organizations with the information they need to address the challenges communities face every day.

John L. Krauss, a SPEA faculty member and an adjunct professor of law at the IU School of Law-Indianapolis, directs both the IU Center for Urban Policy and the IU Public Policy Institute. The Lilly Endowment grant, according to Krauss, will enable the Center and the Institute to advance their efforts to provide independent, original research and program development in such areas as housing, land use, government reform and economic development.

"This award reflects the hard work being done by everyone at the Center for Urban Policy and the Environment and the Public Policy Institute and shows confidence that our work is having a positive impact on real people in communities throughout Indiana," Krauss said. "With this continued support from the Endowment, we can pursue the kind of groundbreaking research necessary for well-informed policymakers and, ultimately, smarter public policy."

The Center for Urban Policy and the Environment boasts extensive experience in local and state government operations and has provided services to more than 200 clients, including state agencies and universities in Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Minnesota and Ohio; federal agencies; local governments; corporations and nonprofit organizations. Lilly Endowment has been a longtime supporter of the Center, providing general operating support since the Center's inception in 1992.

The Center staffed the Kernan-Shepard Commission on Local Government Reform for Indiana and serves as home to the Indiana Advisory Commission on Intergovernmental Relations. It was announced last week that the Center will work with the Indiana Supreme Court's Division of State Court Administration to study ways to make the state's system of trial courts more equitable and efficient.