GOOD NEWS!!! Two recent national reports have given Connecticut solid marks in technology and science, confirming that Connecticut is a contender in the national technology and science arena. The reports were issued by the Milken Institute, an independent economic think tank located in Santa Monica, California, and the Battelle Memorial Institute, the world’s largest independent consulting, research and development organization, based in Columbus, Ohio.
The Milken Institute’s State Technology and Science Index compares technology and science assets in each state, factoring in 77 individual indicators across five categories: Research and Development Inputs, Risk Capital and Entrepreneurial Infrastructure, Human Capital Investment, Technology and Science Work Force, and Technology Concentration and Dynamism. Connecticut’s overall ranking this year came in at #7, up from a 10th place finish in the previous report in 2004. We stood out with impressive rankings in a couple of areas. We ranked 4th in the nation in Human Capital Investment, which measures, among other things, SAT scores, the prevalence of bachelor’s degrees, the concentration of doctoral degree holders, state appropriations for higher education and home computer penetration. Additionally, within the Research and Development Inputs category, Connecticut achieved a 1st place ranking in the industry research and development funding category and raised its scores across the board – in academic, industry and federal research and development funding.
While Connecticut had a strong showing in this year’s report, the report cautioned that the technology and science arena is extremely competitive…
“States must stay on the cutting edge in order to stay in the game.”
“The marketplace has become truly global and hyper-competitive. In facing this new reality, each state must decide how to capitalize on its unique location, intellectual capital, and regional assets in order to sustain entrepreneurial activity in science and technology, the economic lifeblood of the future.”
Battelle’s report, entitled Technology, Talent and Capital: State Bioscience Initiatives 2008, ranks Connecticut 13th in the nation in NIH Funding as well as BioScience Venture Capital Investments. On a per capita basis our standing in the former category looks even rosier at #5. We also rank 15th nationally in the number of bioscience and related patents issued, which on a per capita basis translates into a 6th place ranking. Our performance on a per capita basis was also respectable at #5 in the nation for Academic Bioscience R&D Expenditures and Bioscience Higher Education Degrees and 6th in the nation in Bioscience Occupational Employment. It was noted that within the bioscience sector, the state has a particularly high concentration of employment in two subsectors: drugs/pharmaceuticals and medical devices/equipment.
After reading the reports, it is clear that Connecticut possesses many assets that should continue to be cultivated. We are indeed a strong contender in the national technology economy but still have room for improvement and, in this very competitive environment, must keep pushing forward and raising the bar.
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