Home » NEWS » Manufacturing » Study looks at forest 'business clusters'

Study looks at forest 'business clusters'

STARKVILLE — As links in a chain provide support and stability, so can “business clusters” for the forest products industry, according to a new report by Mississippi State University’s (MSU’s) Forest and Wildlife Research Center.

Funded by the U.S. Endowment for Forestry and Communities Inc., the recent university study found that business clustering can provide competitive advantages and build business resilience among the entities. The investigation was conducted by MSU scientists and colleagues at the University of Missouri’s forestry department and Minnesota-based Dovetail Partners Inc.

“Close collaboration between members of a business cluster allows for better understanding of processes, cost structures and opportunities for efficiency improvements,” said Robert Grala, an MSU assistant forestry professor. “This type of collaboration can provide the resiliency needed to address adverse market conditions and allow for the adoption of new technologies.”

The study collected information during the summer and fall of 2008. The information was used to develop a template for a national registry of forest business clusters.

Overall, the study found that companies gain ready access to trained workers, infrastructure and specialized suppliers by locating their production and services in business clusters.

To assist interested entities, the project concluded by opening an online registry of U.S. forest business clusters. The registry includes location, contact information, legal status, umbrella organizations, duration, size and specific strategies of existing forest sector clusters.

The entire report may be viewed at www.usendowment.org/businessclusteringhome.html. To register an existing cluster or find the nearest one, visit www.fwrc.msstate.edu/cluster.

BEFORE YOU GO…

… we’d like to ask for your support. More people are reading the Mississippi Business Journal than ever before, but advertising revenues for all conventional media are falling fast. Unlike many, we do not use a pay wall, because we want to continue providing Mississippi’s most comprehensive business news each and every day. But that takes time, money and hard work. We do it because it is important to us … and equally important to you, if you value the flow of trustworthy news and information which have always kept America strong and free for more than 200 years.

If those who read our content will help fund it, we can continue to bring you the very best in news and information. Please consider joining us as a valued member, or if you prefer, make a one-time contribution.

Click for more info

About Wally Northway

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

*