The Illinois Defense Industry Adjustment (DIA) Program supports the state’s defense and manufacturing industries by delivering resources and providing new insights that help companies and communities grow, diversify, and become more resilient. The Illinois DIA Program covers five communities considered to be at high risk to market force changes due to their ties to the defense industry, a high concentration of manufacturers or both. Areas include the Quad Cities, Rockford, Northeastern Illinois, Peoria and Southwestern Illinois.

With funding from the U.S. Department of Defense, Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA), the program is executed through a partnership between the University of Illinois System, the Quad Cities Chamber of Commerce, and the Voorhees Center at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC).

“The Illinois DIA Program is really a set of different strategies and initiatives that have been pulled together to focus on one thing: how do we make our defense industry and Illinois’ economy more resilient and competitive,” says Joey Mak of the University of Illinois System.

How the Illinois DIA Program serves business

The Illinois DIA Program has developed resources in each community that can support businesses with:

  • Data collection and analysis to better understand how Illinois companies and communities are impacted by defense spending.
  • Comprehensive mapping of Illinois' defense and manufacturing industry supply chains to identify regional competitive advantages, new market opportunities and import substitution options for companies.
  • Business and technical assistance through individual economic development engines, including the Quad Cities’ Defense Industry Adjustment Program – Quad Cities Manufacturing Innovation Hub, an initiative of the Quad Cities Chamber.
  • Creating technology roadmaps that describe emerging tools and technologies critical to a company’s future business growth as well as provide guidance for their adoption.

Defense industry economic impact

  • Illinois is ranked 19th nationally for total Department of Defense spending with $7.0 billion in defense contracts.
  • The Illinois defense industry accounts for $13.3 billion in economic activity annually, including $1.2 billion in the Quad Cities region.
  • The Illinois defense industry supports more than 150,000 jobs in Illinois and 14,000 alone in the Quad Cities region.
  • Many Illinois and Quad Cities manufacturers depend on defense contracts or support other businesses that do.
  • Reductions in defense spending – an “industry adjustment” – will have a ripple effect across the state, requiring companies to quickly adapt with new operational efficiencies, new products or new customers in order to remain viable.

To find out more about the Illinois DIA Program, visit

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