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Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC)
The Ohio Agricultural Research and Development Center (OARDC) is the research arm of Ohio State University's College of Food, Agricultural and Environmental Sciences. OARDC—which, according to Battelle, is Ohio’s foremost driver of agbioscience research and development—works with government and industry leaders to capture and grow the agricultural biosciences sector and to transform research into new business ventures and jobs. Agbioscience research includes food production and processing; food safety; biomass conversion for energy, chemicals and materials; and animal health and pharmaceuticals.
OARDC’s innovation services fall into three main categories.
- A range of business support services taps the commercial potential in the discoveries within the research programs and facilitates relationships with the private sector.
- SEEDS: The OARDC Research Enhancement Competitive Grants Program provides seed money to the department’s scientists, students and faculty. These competitive grants help honorees develop the necessary preliminary data for a strong grant application or provide them matching funds to leverage external funding, with the overarching goal of promoting research excellence. The structure of the SEEDS program also encourages partnerships with industry and other stakeholders, with a funding portion to match private dollars on projects of interest to industry and support the exploration of enterprises that are potentially new to Ohio.
- In addition, the BioHio Research Park—the first business and technology center in Ohio aimed at capitalizing on the agricultural biosciences—is part of OARDC. Located on the Wooster, Ohio, campus, the 95-acre site provides space for startup firms and existing companies and assists with access to researchers, specialized equipment, services, and additional space needs.
Although the main campus is based in Wooster, OARDC also has agricultural research stations at several other sites across Ohio.