The Research Triangle, commonly referred to as simply The Triangle, is a region in the Piedmont of North Carolina in the United States, anchored by North Carolina State University, Duke University, University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, and the cities of Raleigh and Durham and the towns of Cary and Chapel Hill. The eight-county region, officially named the Raleigh–Durham–Chapel Hill combined statistical area (CSA), comprises the Raleigh and Durham–Chapel Hill metropolitan areas and the Dunn, Henderson, Oxford, and Sanford Micropolitan Statistical Areas. A 2013 Census estimate put the population at 2,037,430, making it the second largest metropolitan area in the state of North Carolina behind Charlotte. The Raleigh–Durham television market includes a broader 24-county area which includes Fayetteville, and has a population of 2,726,000 persons.
The "Triangle" name was cemented in the public consciousness in the 1950s with the creation of Research Triangle Park, home to numerous high-tech companies and enterprises. Although the name is now used to refer to the geographic region, "the Triangle" originally referred to the universities, whose research facilities, and the educated workforce they provide, have historically served as a major attraction for businesses located in the region. The region should not be confused with The Triad, which is a North Carolina region adjacent to and directly west of the Triangle comprising Greensboro, Winston-Salem, and High Point, among other cities.