R.E.I. Essay, Research Paper
Regional Economic Impacts
Idaho State University, 1996
Dr. Richard Bowen, President of Idaho State University, requested the Center for
Business Research to conduct a study of the impact of the University on Idaho,
with particular emphasis on its regional impacts upon the Pocatello area. This
publication reports the findings and results of that effort, which was begun in
the fall of 1997.
This report is a follow-up to, and a complete revision of, a previous study
conducted in 1988 (”A Report to the President of Idaho State University: The
Impact of University-related Expenditures on Idaho’s Economy, 1986-87). For
several reasons, the direct comparison of the findings of the two reports is not
Specifically, the present report utilizes multipliers refined and updated by the
Regional Science Research Institute, while the previous report relied upon
Input-Output estimates generated by the US Bureau of Economic Analysis, Regional
Input-output Measurement System (RIMS). Secondly, the focus and emphasis of the
present report is on the Pocatello area economy, while the 1988 study emphasized
state level impacts. Third, the present report attempts to discount those
impacts generated by permanent area residents, attempts to estimate a “return on
investment” for the State of Idaho, and makes other refinements or improvements
to the 1988 approach.
Paul R. Zelus, Ph.D., directed the study, and was ably assisted first by Nancy
L. Kelly and then Walter Bulawa, Ph.D., Research Associates of the Center for
Business Research at Idaho State University. Acknowledgement is also extended to
the many campus officials who provided the often tedious and detailed
information needed to conduct the study. The many faculty, staff, and students
who responded to expenditure surveys are acknowledged for the critical
information they provided.
This project was aided immeasurably by the shared experiences of researchers
from Boise State University, Northern Arizona University and the University of
Virginia. In that order, I acknowledge the helpful comments and advice of Dr.
Charles Skoro, Dr. Jerry Conover and Dr. John Knapp.
Paul R. Zelus, Ph.D.