To provide independent university-based analytical expertise and technical assistance that informs and advances economic, community, and workforce development decision-making in Maine.
Since 1977, the Maine Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) has been critical resource in supporting Maine’s economy by providing the public and private sectors with university-based expert research and services. CBER is designated by the US Economic Development Administration (EDA) as a University Center for the state of Maine and is supported in part by the Maine Economic Improvement Fund (MEIF). In addition to providing sponsored services to organizations across the state, the Center’s core programs are focused on supporting and advancing the state's 10-year economic development strategy and competitiveness in key technology sectors.
The Center maintains a host of analytical tools that allow modeling of a range of economic issues, including economic impacts, the impacts of policies, as well as population and economic forecasting. The Center provides a number of services and technical assistance that include the following:
Economic Modeling & Forecasting
Labor Market & Workforce Research
Industry and Occupational Analyses
Spatial Analysis & GIS
Local & Regional Economic Development
Survey Design & Implementation
Clients, Grant Providers, & Community Partners
CBER provides public and private sector organizations with the critical knowledge and insights they need to make informed decisions. A selection of past and current clients, grant providers, and partners are below.
Androscoggin Valley Council of Governments - Aroostook County Partnership - Atlantic Corporation - Bath Iron Works - Biobased Maine - TD Banknorth Group - Casco Bay Estuary Partnership - Central Maine Power - Coastal Counties Workforce Investment - Coastal Enterprises, Inc. - Colby College - Consensus Economic Forecasting Commission - Consumers Water Company - Cooperative Extension Service - Cumberland County Civic Center - E2Tech - Eastern Maine Development Corporation - Economic Development Council of Maine - ELIZA - Greater Portland Council of Governments - Hannaford Brothers - Health Watch Technologies, LLC - IDEXX - InforME, Inc. (Maine.gov) - Institute for Real Estate Research and Education - Kennebec Valley Council of - Governments - LL Bean - Mainebiz - Maine Council on Economic Education - Maine Department of Agriculture, Conservation, & Forestry - Maine Department of Economic and Community Development - Maine Department of Labor - Maine Department of Transportation - Maine Development Foundation - Maine Economic Development District Association - Maine Enterprise Council - Maine Housing Authority - Maine Legislature - Maine Manufacturing Association - Maine Mass Timber Commercialization Center - Maine Medical Center - Maine Office of Innovation - Maine Real Estate & Development Association - Maine Renewable Energy Association - Maine Revenue Service - Maine Small Business Development Centers - Maine Space Grant Consortium - Maine State Planning Office - Maine Sports Commission - Maine Technology Institute - Maine Turnpike Authority - Mass Timber Commercialization Center - Maine Wedding Report, LLC. - National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration - New England Association of Cable Television Operators - New England Economic Partnership - Northern Maine Development Commission - Northrup, Devine & Tarbell, Inc. - Our Katahdin - Pan Atlantic Consulting - Portland Chamber of Commerce - City of Portland - Portland Community Chamber of Commerce - Portland Stage Company - Portland Museum of Art - Portland Water District - Professional Logging Contractors of Maine - ReEnergy Holdings - City of Rockland - Rosemont Markets - Southern Maine Economic Development District - Stinson/Bumblebee Foods - The Corporate Library - UNUM - US Department of Agriculture - USM Data Innovation Project - Verizon - West Oxford Agricultural Society - City of Westbrook
Meet Our Team
Professor Richard Bilodeau
Interim Director, Maine Center for Business and Economic Research
Richard Bilodeau serves as of the interim director of the Maine Center for Business and Economic Research (CBER) at the University of Southern Maine (USM). In addition, he teaches both undergraduate and graduate courses in entrepreneurship, creative strategies, design thinking, business sustainability, and marketing at the University of Southern Maine. He brings both academic and professional business expertise in marketing and management. Professor Bilodeau holds an M.B.A. in Marketing and B.S. in Business Administration from the University of Southern Maine. Check here for more info about Richard!
Laura Yeitz, M.P.P.M.
Project Director/Research Associate
Laura holds a Master’s in Policy, Planning, and Management with a focus on sustainable development and geospatial technologies and a graduate certificate in Applied Geographic Information Systems from the University of Southern Maine. She also holds a B.S. in Food Service Management from Johnson & Wales University.
Charles S. Colgan, Ph.D.
Senior Research Advisor, Professor Emeritus Muskie School of Public Service
Dr. James Beaupre, Innovation Engineer, Foster Center for Student Innovation, University of Maine
Renee Kelly, Director of Economic Development Initiatives and Foster Center for Student Innovation, Office of Innovation and Economic Development, University of Maine
Dr. Tracy Michaud, Dept. head and Assistant Professor of Hospitality and Tourism, University of Southern Maine
Shane O'Neill, Forest Industry Business Development Manager, School of Forest Resources, University of Maine
Dr. Jonathan Rubin, Professor School of Economics, Director Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center, University of Maine
Dr. Stephen Shaler, Professor and Director, School of Forest Resources, University of Maine
Jake Ward, Vice President of Innovation and Economic Development, University of Maine
University Center Affiliate Staff and Faculty:
Dr. Colgan is Senior Research Associate and Advisor at CBER, Professor Emeritus at USM, and director of Research at the Center for the Blue Economy (CBE) at the Middlebury Institute of International Studies. Previously, Dr. Colgan served as Professor of Public Policy and Management in the Edmund S. Muskie School of Public Service at the University of Southern Maine and was the Chair of the Muskie School’s PhD Program in Public Policy. His long term economic forecasts are used by the Maine Department of Transportation and the Economic Development Districts of Maine. Prior to joining the University of Southern Maine, he served in the Maine State Planning Office, was State Economist, Special Assistant to the Governor for International Trade, and Director of Natural Resource and Economic Policy. Dr. Colgan’s research has been funded by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, Maine EPSCoR, National Science Foundation, NOAA, and the Senator George J. Mitchell Center.