About the Flinn Foundation
Mission and Vision
Mission: To improve the quality of life in Arizona to benefit future generations.
In recent years Arizona has experienced robust population and economic growth. Demographic projections forecast a doubling of its current population to 10 million people in 2030. The state’s economy has largely been driven by this growth; it has not developed a diversified knowledge-based economy to balance more cyclical industries such as construction and tourism.
Economists predict the biosciences will be the primary driver of economic growth in the first half of the 21st century. Already, the biosciences are among the fastest-growing segments of Arizona’s economy.
The Foundation is committed to helping Arizona become a global competitor for research and commercialization in the biosciences. This commitment is consistent with the early history and interests of our founders.
Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap
In 2001, the Foundation commissioned Battelle, the largest private nonprofit organization experienced in charting economic development strategies in the bioscience sector, to help define Arizona’s Bioscience Roadmap, a template to advance Arizona to bioscience prominence.
The Foundation’s Board of Directors adopted a mission-driven commitment to help Arizona achieve the goals outlined in the Roadmap. We apply a blend of grants, direct investments, and program-related investments to fulfill this commitment. With its own modest resources, the Foundation could not by itself build a competitive biosciences economy. Only by pooling ideas and resources with others who share this vision could we collectively hope to achieve our mutual goal.
Arizona’s strategy is to target niche areas where it has nationally recognized research capacity—molecular diagnostics, cancer therapeutics, and the neurological sciences—and historic strengths, such as computer technologies, optical sciences, and electronics.
The key is to foster greater collaboration among scientists in these disciplines and Arizona’s research institutions and to reward such collaborative efforts with a blend of public- and private-sector funding. Collectively, these endeavors can propel Arizona to the forefront.
To date, Arizona has invested hundreds of millions of public- and private-sector dollars to build new research facilities, recruit top scientists, and nurture promising new start-up companies. By any measure, Arizona has achieved much progress; a solid foundation for its future health and economic well being is emerging.