people walk into a building

DPI Comes to The 78

Tech. Talent. Research.

The Discovery Partners Institute entices people to jumpstart their tech careers or companies in Chicago. Led by the University of Illinois System in partnership with local and global research universities, it does two things: tech talent development and applied R&D. DPI prepares students and workers to step into high-demand tech jobs. It also builds research teams and matches them with new funding. With an initial $235 million in state investment and additional matching funding, DPI has the resources to attract, develop and leverage the most ambitious people and companies the region has to offer — and keep them here.

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Opening 2024 at The 78
500,000 sq. ft. innovation hub
10,000 individuals trained and upskilled each year
to step into high-demand tech jobs
$200M annually invested in R&D per year
from public and private sector

Illinois is losing promising, young talent and companies. DPI will be a magnet that retains the students we’ve educated; improves the skills of our current workforce; and entices tech employers to put their most attractive, high-paying jobs here. As a hive of activity featuring state-of-the-art lab, classroom and meeting spaces, DPI will develop applied R&D clusters, funded by corporations, government and foundations, that aim to solve complex societal challenges. DPI will build research teams and match their expertise with funders’ needs through an unrivaled network of universities and faculty.

Discovery Partners Institute Innovation Ecosystem

Developing Tomorrow's Tech Talent

DPI will develop promising and diverse tech talent, focusing on high school through to the first job out of college, and current workers seeking new skills in computing, data and analytics. Our systemwide approach will develop:

  • K-12 new economy programs for learners and teachers.
  • Student experiential immersion programs for DPI partner institutions.
  • A professional skilling accelerator.
  • Developing career pathways for underemployed, diverse talent.

Accelerating for the New Economy

This fusion of university and corporate partners will produce game-changing research to fuel an economic engine for future growth and job creation in the city.

  • Bringing the best minds from academia and industry together with thousands of students in an interdisciplinary hub of critical mass
  • Serving as a magnet for entrepreneurs, and venture capitalists for investors, from across the state and nation
  • Building research centers of excellence where Illinois already excels, including data analytics and computing, and their applications in food and agriculture; health and wellness; finance and insurance; and transportation/logistics.