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The National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, which has its western headquarters in St. Louis, has signed a new partnership agreement with St. Louis University to collaborate on geospatial research, training, and innovation initiatives.

The university will provide the agency, known as the NGA, with subject matter expertise, test support and technical assistance in emerging research areas, including pilotless aircraft systems and predictors of regional conflict and instability, the school said Wednesday. Financial details were not disclosed.

SLU’s partnership with the NGA is part of a new initiative, called GeoSLU, that seeks to leverage the school’s geospatial expertise to create a leading center for geospatial research, training and innovation in St. Louis.

SLU and the NGA are co-sponsoring a conference in April, bringing together government, academic and industry partners in the geospatial industry.

“Because of SLU’s diverse geospatial research and training portfolio, we are well positioned to support the NGA’s work,” SLU President Fred Pestello said in a statement. “Our expertise is an asset for the agency as well as the region, and I am pleased that we will be able to partner with the NGA on their vital work.”

The NGA is building a $1.7 billion campus north of downtown St. Louis, with plans to relocate thousands of employees that are currently based at its facility near the Anheuser-Busch brewery south of downtown.

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