top of page

The Connective Launches to Build the Nation’s Largest Most Connected Smart Region in Greater Phoenix

At last night’s State of the Smart Region Gala in Phoenix, the Partnership for Economic Innovation, together with the Greater Phoenix Economic Council, Maricopa Association of Governments, Arizona State University and the Institute for Digital Progress, announced the official launch of The Connective, Greater Phoenix’s Smart Region Consortium.

Founded with support from Cox Communications, Dell Inc., Maricopa County, Salt River Project and Sprint, The Connective partners with Greater Phoenix communities and industry partners to build the nation’s largest smart region by developing and deploying technology solutions rooted in connectivity, mobility, equity and sustainability.

“Two years ago we announced the intention and vision for a smart region consortium in Greater Phoenix,” said Chris Camacho, president and CEO of the Greater Phoenix Economic Council. “Now a reality, this consortium will elevate the region’s competitiveness and enhance the reputation of Greater Phoenix as a preeminent market where companies can test, develop and deploy technology at scale while providing our residents with a technologically advanced lifestyle opportunity.”

The Connective community members and industry partners will collaborate to take on the large-scale regional and sub-regional opportunities affecting Greater Phoenix citizens. By collaborating across sectors and communities, The Connective enables a solutions approach to problem solving that leads to the creation of implementable, interconnected, affordable, and interoperable services that enhance the quality of life for the citizens and businesses in Greater Phoenix.

“PEI was established to help transform Greater Phoenix into a top global market for innovation and technology. The Connective provides us the pathways to connect research institutes, advanced industries and high-tech entrepreneurs who have solutions to address real world problems affecting citizens and businesses in Greater Phoenix,” said John Graham, chairman of the Partnership for Economic Innovation.

This consortium is a community-driven applied research model designed to forge an intentional, unprecedented collaboration between public, private, university and community partners.

The City of Apache Junction, City of Buckeye, City of Casa Grande, City of Chandler, Town of El Mirage, Town of Fountain Hills, Town of Gilbert, City of Glendale, City of Goodyear, City of Mesa, City of Peoria, City of Phoenix, Town of Queen Creek, City of Scottsdale, City of Surprise, City of Tempe, City of Tolleson and the Town of Youngtown have committed to participate in The Connective. Additional cities are under consideration for participation.

“The Maricopa Association of Governments will support the consortium by working with member communities to identify challenges or opportunities they believe can be addressed through technology, and the industry partners will collaborate to develop proposed solutions,” said MAG Regional Council Chair and Tempe Mayor Mark Mitchell. “Once the solutions have been implemented, MAG will collect and manage the data to track the success of the projects. We are excited to be part of an effort that will improve our daily lives and enhance our economic competitiveness.”

“Creating a smarter, safer, more vibrant city is at the heart of this effort. ASU is proud to partner with PEI and our neighbors to advance this initiative for our city, our region and the state,” said Cynthia Sagers, Vice President, Research at Arizona State University

About the Partnership for Economic Innovation

The Partnership for Economic Innovation (PEI) is a passionate collective of community, business and opinion leaders, dedicated to the mission of fulfilling the economic opportunities of Greater Phoenix. The intent of PEI is to present a vision, identify opportunities for action, and guide resources for producing real solutions. The success of PEI is measured by the advancement of our economic presence, beyond being a more competitive region and toward being recognized as a world-class economy. For more information about PEI, visit


bottom of page