Abstract: For many regions of our nation the “old economy”, which we depended upon for decades, either doesn’t exist anymore, or is rapidly fading away. The new economy, the innovation economy, demands a new approach to economic policy and programs. It requires a higher degree of collaboration between government, academia, and the private sector, and the establishment of regional innovation networks, ecosystems, to generate new jobs and wealth. It requires economic development policies that will facilitate the movement of intellectual property and trained human capital from academia to the private sector, and leverages the inventions of our Federal labs and institutions. Further, this process needs to be sustainable. Thriving in the innovation economy is a journey, not a one-time event. It is the creation of a persistent regional collective intelligence that continuously produces the innovations that are the foundation of our competitiveness.
This white paper demonstrates the value of using Innovation Network Mapping and Innovation Genotype™ analysis to inform economic development efforts. These techniques enable economic developers to identify the technological strengths of academic, commercial, and government organizations within a city, region, or state. They enable identification of important technical domains, specific organizations, and key individuals, which if joined in collaborative networks, create a force to accelerate economic development. Finally, when combined with several network-based mechanisms for economic development, it results in the creation of a larger regional collective intelligence to drive job creation and wealth generation.