Economic and Functional Impact

Independent report finds substantial value
Extension Impact Report

A new report finds that Extension provides more than $600 million of value to Illinois annually, 10 times its budget.

Prepared by TECnomy Partners, LLC, a firm specializing in impact assessments, the report values the annual economic and functional benefits of Illinois Extension at more than $603 million, about 10 times the $60.9 million budget of the University unit in FY 2019.

Webinar with report author Simon Tripp

Calculating impact

The report measures Extension’s economic impact in two ways: expenditure-based impacts, and functional or programmatic impacts. The economic and functional impacts assessed in the report sum to $603.3 million annually, an amount nearly ten times more than Extension’s expenditures in FY2019.

  • Extension’s expenditure-based impact on the Illinois economy (direct, indirect, and induced) is $126 million annually.
    Calculated using the input/output economic model IMPLAN, this is the stimulus effect of Extension’s payroll (655 full time equivalent employees statewide) and other expenditures on the state economy.
  • The annual programmatic (functional) benefit to the Illinois economy of five selected examples is estimated at $477.3 million.
    The five illustrative examples of functional or programmatic impact spanned the breadth of Extension: agriculture, nutrition, health, community, and youth development.
Today's Extension

Today Illinois Extension serves as: 

  • An innovation engine, relaying needs and challenges from the field to university researchers and research teams; and testing new practices, technologies, and innovations to sustain and advance the economy, social progress, and individual capacity.
  • A transformational educator working to provide continuous, noncredit education to audiences statewide—education that improves recipients’ personal and working lives. Illinois Extension is a teaching organization that works to significantly enhance human capital, generate well-prepared practitioners, and promote lifelong learning across the State of Illinois.
  • A regional network—with a presence in every Illinois county—linking communities, businesses, and the general population to the intensive research and development and technical resources of the university and its partners.
  • A transdisciplinary entity able to adopt holistic, integrated approaches to tackle complex problems in scientific, economic, technological, and social areas of importance to the citizens of the state.
  • A catalyst for the improvement of natural resource management practices, enhancing the environment, and sustaining Illinois’ quality of place, ensuring the attractiveness of the state and its communities for human capital, new ventures, and industry retention and expansion.
  • A deliverer of research, teaching, and Extension efforts to bolster food safety, ensure a secure food supply, and protect and promote the health of the state’s citizens.
  • A strengthener of the quality of life of individuals and families, thereby contributing to community sustainability and vitality.
  • A provider of 4-H Youth Development and leadership services, helping to provide the next generation of workers, leaders, and responsible citizens.
For More Information

For more information about this report, contact Stephen Wald at