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CSU System think tanks and consortia pull together experts and communities to solve problems and inspire the future.

The System has an ever-growing number of initiatives focused on thought-leadership and interdisciplinary work with diverse experts to provide movement and solutions on some of the biggest global issues.

These entities each focus around a topic of importance to the global community, and bring together diverse stakeholders to explore, inform, and engage around these issues.

Center for the New Energy Economy

Founded in 2011 as a department of CSU, Colorado’s 41st Governor, Bill Ritter, Jr. leads the Center for the New Energy Economy, assisted by a team of energy and environmental policy experts. The Center works directly with governors, legislators, regulators, utilities, and stakeholders by providing technical and strategic assistance to help decision makers create policies that facilitate America’s transition to a clean energy economy. Learn more at

North American Agricultural Advisory Network

The North American Agricultural Advisory Network (NAAAN) is an emerging formal network of stakeholders in agricultural advisory services, to be hosted at the CSU Spur campus at the National Western Center. The NAAAN links existing agricultural extension communities with one another and with stakeholders in Canada, Mexico, and the U.S. The NAAAN connects with counterparts in other countries through its membership in the Global Forum for Rural Advisory Services (GFRAS). Learn more at

Salazar Center for North American Conservation

The CSU Salazar Center for North American Conservation supports and advances the health and connectivity of the natural systems and landscapes of North America in order to support climate adaptation and resilience, protect biodiversity, and support long-term human health. An intersectional approach builds bridges that connect academic research, community practice, and policy development.

The Center is led by former US Secretary of Interior, US Senator, and Colorado Attorney General Ken Salazar, and will be housed at the CSU System Spur campus at the National Western Center. Learn more at

Together We Grow

Together We Grow is an agribusiness consortium with more than 20 members, including major agricultural commodities companies, educational institutions, government agencies, and others committed to improving and expanding diversity in agribusiness. The consortium sponsors research and provides a platform to share best practices for building future workforce capacity. 

The organization is expanding its reach by establishing the Center for an Enhanced Workforce in Agriculture at the CSU System Spur campus at the National Western Center. Learn more at

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3D magazine with the Winter 2021 cover