August 28, 2008

Jennifer Tanner
Communications Specialist

South Georgia Institute Renamed

VALDOSTA - The South Georgia Institute is now the Center for Business and Economic Research, according to Dr. Cliff Lipscomb, the center's new director.

CBER is a service arm of Valdosta State University and the Harley Langdale Jr. College of Business Administration, primarily supporting the 41-counties in VSU's service region; however the organization is open to serving all areas of Georgia and the US.

Lipscomb, assistant professor for LCOBA, took the reigns from Dr. John Boatwright on Aug. 1 at a point of change for the organization, which traditionally assists businesses and governments with strategic planning, research, human resource management, corporate training and other areas. Other services are or will soon be provided, including customer service quality surveys, industry-specific research, pay/classification studies, economic impact studies, mystery shopping services and more.

Sponsored by the former SGI, now CBER, Lipscomb collects data and provides a cost of living index for the Valdosta metropolitan statistical area. The organization also publishes the South Georgia Business Outlook, a quarterly publication on the area's economic conditions that is edited by Dr. Cindy Tori, interim department head for the VSU Marketing and Economics Department. The Outlook and the 2006 VSU Economic Impact Study are available on the LCOBA Web site, . He said CBER will soon create a new Web site to replace , develop new brochures that list and describe a full range of services, and pursue grants for faculty participation in multidisciplinary applied research.

"What is really great about the center is that it is local - individuals/businesses do not have to contact other universities or organizations in the state because we can do it right here in Valdosta and South Georgia," Lipscomb said.

Lipscomb said he is looking forward to leading the organization as it helps businesses and governments with various needs as well as promoting the research abilities of LCOBA faculty. Call him at (229) 245-3774 or e-mail him at for more information about the CBER and its services.

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