MACKINAC ISLAND (AP) – A cluster of Michigan’s research universities was responsible for nearly $1 billion in economic activity in Detroit last year and more than 11,600 jobs, according to a new report.

The University Research Corridor — an alliance of the University of Michigan, Michigan State University and Wayne State University — released the findings Thursday at the annual Mackinac Policy Conference.

Michigan State President Lou Anna Simon says the schools wanted an analysis of their work in Detroit because the city’s success is “so critical for the future of Michigan.” University of Michigan President Mark Schlissel says it’s also important to show residents “what it is we do for the state” in an era of threats to state higher education funding.

The URC conducted $263 million in Detroit-related research in 2015.

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