Resilient communities are forged by overcoming challenges, and the coast of Maine is no stranger to challenge. The passion, energy, and ingenuity we bring to the challenges we face is unrivaled. We work alongside Maine’s 120 island and coastal communities to help them address these unique challenges, so that they can thrive and lead as examples of sustainability.

Marine Economy

Maine’s marine living resources are a mainstay of our state’s economy. As we help invest in the resilience of our marine industry, we're ready to support aquaculturists and fishermen, community leaders, and small business owners through the uncertain times ahead and beyond.

Small Business

The Island Institute’s Small Business Team supports fishermen, artists, makers, small businesses, and entrepreneurs in Maine’s coastal and island communities. We provide one-on-one professional business development including education, loans, grants, and mentorship.


We work with communities, nonprofits, and town officials to help facilitate thoughtful planning around a sustainable economic future. Our Broadband team works with the unique needs of coastal and rural communities as they bring broadband to their residents and businesses.

Climate and Energy

With a strong history of helping island communities with weatherization and community energy projects, we're exploring energy efficiency and renewable energy opportunities as one important path to increasing climate and economic resilience in our along our state’s working waterfronts.

Sea Level Rise

Island and coastal communities are on the front line of the impacts associated with sea level rise, a persistent and long-term problem. Our Sea Level Rise team conducts research and outreach to engage and assist coastal and island community leaders in adapting to climate change.

Creative Economy

In Maine, across the country, and around the world, the creative economy provides jobs, fosters innovation, drives tourism, and promotes culture. We strive to support the artists and makers who help promote the beauty and endurance of Maine’s islands and coast.

The latest news and stories from Maine's islands and coast

Funding to diversify Maine’s island and coastal economies