Monday, December 7, 2009

The IT Industry: Hub of the Massachusetts Technology Economy

A consortium of corporate leaders, industry associations (including MassTLC), and government officials initiated an effort to document and publicize (1) the substantial contribution the IT industry makes to the Massachusetts economy and (2) the tremendous impact the IT industry has on other key sectors of the economy. The group commissioned the University of Massachusetts Donahue Institute to research the sector. Their findings were released in a report entitled, "The IT Industry: Hub of the Massachusetts Technology Economy," on December 7th.

Governor Deval Patrick presided at the study release and took questions from the audience. Pictured here from the event are Kiki Mills of MITX, Anne Doherty Johnson of TechAmerica, Governor Deval Patrick, Tom Hopcroft of MassTLC, and Mark Horan of MassNetComms (now MassTLC). Key findings of the report include:

Reinforcement of Massachusetts' role as a tech hub. In 2008, the IT industry pumped $65 billion into the state economy, 18 percent of state GDP. It is the state's second largest sector (behind healthcare), and the industry leverages highly educated and well-trained workers; its firms are entrepreneurial and highly competitive; and it plays a central, catalytic role in the Massachusetts innovation economy.

Massachusetts is a global leader in IT and digital innovation. Emerging sectors in robotics, digital media, digital gaming and mobile communications are transforming established markets, opening new business opportunities in arenas enabled by digital technology, such as cloud computing.

Massachusetts is a magnet for investment in IT and digital technologies. Venture capital investment in the Massachusetts IT industry ranks second only to California, and Massachusetts draws the most IT grant dollars per IT worker in the nation. It far outpaces California on a per-IT worker basis in several major federal funding sources -- including the Department of Defense, National Institutes for Health, and the National Science Foundation.

Massachusetts is a highly competitive IT business location. It as one of the best regions in the world for opportunities for innovation and growth in a 2009 survey of IT businesses. Compared to California, it ranked high as an ideal business location, in categories including: access to world class research partners, presence of strong school systems, ease of commuting, access to cultural amenities and cost of housing

The study reinforces the dynamic culture and framework for IT industry collaboration which now exists in Massachusetts. The study was commissioned by a consortium of corporate, industry association and government leaders including Verizon, Cisco Systems, AT&T, Comcast, EMC, IBM, the Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development, the Massachusetts Network Communications Council, the Massachusetts Technology Leadership Council, Microsoft, TechAmerica, and MTC’s John Adams Innovation Institute. The strong support and leadership of Gov. Deval Patrick and his economic development team have been a critical factor.

Please download a copy of the full report here:

The release of the key findings was followed by a roundtable discussion with Secretary Gregory Bialecki; Harvard Medical School & Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center CIO John Halamka; EMC Corporation CTO Jeff Nick; iRobot CEO & Co-Founder Colin Angle; BzzAgent CEO Dave Balter; and Google Ventures Managing Partner Rich Miner about transformative trends in digital technology and their implications for growth and development of the Massachusetts knowledge economy.

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