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Scott Tate, Ph.D.

Associate Director for Community Innovations
Areas of Expertise:

• Economic opportunity and innovative communities
• Place-based development
• Community and civic engagement

A writer, teacher, and consultant, Scott Tate helps people, places, and organizations address challenges and pursue opportunities for positive change.  Currently Associate Director for Community Innovations for the Virginia Tech Center for Economic & Community Engagement, Scott has over twenty years of experience working with public, private, and nonprofit sector organizations on opportunity analysis, strategy development, organizational change, leadership capacity, and creative innovation.

Among other projects, he has developed and led programs and conducted research to: develop regional economic strategies across the Commonwealth; support first-generation college students and vulnerable youth; enhance training and career pathways for former coal industry workers; explore arts-based community change efforts in Northern Ireland; encourage social entrepreneurship in Tunisia; enhance manufacturing in rural regions; promote anchor institution and wealth building strategies in communities; assess entrepreneurial ecosystems in smaller metros; and advance sustainable development in Appalachia and on the Eastern Shore.

Tate’s doctoral degree focused on interdisciplinary, theory-informed, problem-driven analysis at the intersection of social, political, ethical, and cultural domains.  His master’s degree is in management from the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech with a focus on talent development and organizational change.  Scott has taught courses at the undergraduate and graduate level related to planning, public policy, sustainable development, Appalachian studies, leadership, economic development, and political science.

His research and writing has appeared in journals such as the Economic Development Quarterly; the Journal of Enterprising Communities:  People and Places in the Global EconomyEnvironment, Space, Place; and Community Development.  His research and writing has also appeared in books and edited volumes published by Ashgate, Routledge, Taylor & Francis, ABC-CLIO, and Zeta Books.

Tate and his family live in Roanoke, where he explores the neighborhood with his wife Meighan; plays in the yard with his dog Biscuit; loses at basketball to his son Toby;  and frequents coffee shops, libraries, greenways, and odd, quiet cozy corners.