What is the innovation index?
The most innovative cities in the United States may not all have Silicon Valley's venture firms or Boston's higher education institutions. Unique strengths, established industries and ambitious entrepreneur communities can all play roles defining a city's future, however, and Streetwise Media has assembled a scoring system to spotlight where the most promising growth stories are happening across the country.
The Streetwise City Innovation Index collects data on each metropolitan area's technology sector, venture funding, higher ed enrollment, livability and economy to assess the climates for technology startups in 50 of the most promising American cities.
In addition to ranking this year top urban climates for startup growth, we have also devised a tool for spotlighting key strengths in metro areas from Honolulu to New York City and everywhere in between. Below, you'll see the numbers that matter for cities working to establish themselves as leaders in the 21st century world economy, as well as how they stack up against each other.
Technology sectors can be defined in different ways, since many non-tech companies now communicate with customers via mobile apps and research and development operations can be found throughout a variety of industries. For the purposes of measuring tech opportunities and intellectual capital, we looked at four key stats: the share of jobs in an area that are computer- and math-based, wage growth for those jobs, each metro area’s birthrate for small companies and the rate of patents produced.