The City of Boston has been ranked the top ‘startup community’ in the U.S. for the second straight year, according to the new “Innovation That Matters” Report released by the national organizations 1776 and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, the U.S. Chamber Technology Engagement Center and FreeEnterprise.com.
Boston is the “city best positioned to succeed in the next-wave digital economy,” noted the report. “Boston’s growing access to talent is a boon for the city, and its steady pipeline of next-wave innovators contributes to its vibrant startup community. Investment by city and civic leaders, universities and other research institutions also contributed to its rise in this year’s connectivity ranking.”
Other cities in the Top Ten include: San Francisco Bay Area (#2), Philadelphia (#3), San Diego (#4), Austin (#5), Atlanta (#6), Dallas (#7), Seattle (#8), New York (#9) and Portland (#10).
Governor Charlie Baker said the ranking “solidifies Boston and the Commonwealth’s standing as the best place to start and grow an innovative technology-focused business, whether it’s a startup emerging from one of our top academic institutions, or a major global company looking for next stage growth. This is a testament to the innovation ecosystem that exists here in Massachusetts, bringing together and building on the unique partnership between our universities and tech firms.”
The report’s authors lauded Boston, Massachusetts for being “home to a high number of next-wave startups” that are backed by the region’s world-class universities, which generate top talent that power innovation. The report also showed “the share of next-wave startups—sectors spanning health, energy, education, and smart cities—grew 29 percent from last year,” critical growth given that nearly half of all startup investment is going to these types of companies, according to the report.
Lt. Governor Karyn Polito said the Administration’s “investments in advanced manufacturing and workforce development are designed to support the growth of innovative companies, supplying a deep bench of experienced and highly trained employees. As we continue those types of investments in infrastructure, talent, and more, we look forward to the Commonwealth remaining a global leader in the innovation economy.”
For cities looking to improve their ranking, the report’s authors suggest embracing unique characteristics and to establish “industry-specific startup clusters that capitalize on your city’s distinct advantages,” while also bridging the gap between a city’s startups, investors, public officials and other business leaders. Engaging the next generation of talented workers and encouraging them to join the startup culture, while also promoting entrepreneurship and innovation are two other suggestions.
Executive Director/CEO Tim Connelly of the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative said, “Working on behalf of the Commonwealth and the Baker-Polito Administration, we’ve been pleased to spearhead economic development programs which bolster our talent pipeline, provide mentoring opportunities for new entrepreneurs, and invest in high-value R&D projects which spur increased engagement and interaction between our universities and top global companies.”