With all the attention on technology and job-creation in the State of the Union speech, during which President Obama unveiled a national competitiveness strategy that begins in Washington, I wanted to know if California was a good place to be in this sector. Washington can only help so much, it’s up to each of the 50 states themselves to create their own plans to innovate and grow.
I therefore looked for the most recent survey relative to this topic and the Milken Institute’s 2010 State Technology and Science Index has jus. The index, which grades each state according to about 80 indicators, including research and development funding, the education and skill level of the workforce, and the percent of companies in high-tech categories, ranked California at the 4th position.
Thanks to Silicon Valley, the high-tech mecca of the world, and a start-up mentality that’s baked into NoCal culture, California is home to five of the top 10 tech clusters in the country. It ranks second in venture capital and patenting activity, fourth in R&D, and fifth in concentration of tech firms. But the continued outsourcing of computer, semiconductor, and communications equipment manufacturing threatens its status. Meanwhile, the decline in science and engineering graduates is a bad omen with budget cuts on the horizon.
You can download this report at this location.