Massachusetts Ranked Most Innovative State in America

The Bay State beat out California, New Jersey, and Washington as the number one innovation hub, per a new Bloomberg survey.

Look, it’s hard being number one all the time, but somebody has to do it, and that somebody is Massachusetts. We’re better at sports, education, and, now, per a Bloomberg survey, innovation.

The new survey found Massachusetts is the best state in the country when it comes to the innovation economy. A plethora of innovation companies combined with highly respected institutions of learning helped Massachusetts edged out California, Washington state, and New Jersey for the top spot in the ranking.

Bloomberg ranked states according to their research and development intensity, productivity, high-tech density, concentration of science, technology, engineering and mathematics employment, science and engineering degree holders, and patent activity. Massachusetts beat second place California in every category except for STEM degree holders and patent activity.

“You’ve got these major, world-ranked institutions that have played a big role in terms of churning out some very, very well-qualified, bright people,” said Nariman Behravesh, chief economist at IHS Inc., while discussing the results of the survey with Bloomberg.

Behravesh said one of the main drivers of innovation in Massachusetts is MIT. He estimated that MIT graduates have created over 400 new innovation companies in Massachusetts in recent years.

Many of these companies are flocking to the booming Kendall Square and Seaport neighborhoods in Cambridge and Boston, respectively. The growth in the innovation economy is not limited to within the confines of Route 128. All parts of the state are creating innovation centers and attempting to create a climate where startups can flourish. For example, gateway cities like Lowell are benefiting from the tech boom through a relationship with an innovation center connected to UMASS, Springfield has a tech incubator as well as a mentor program for young entrepreneurs, and Worcester has an innovation center organized through its local startup accelerator.

And just last week we were talking about how Massachusetts has the best public schools in the country. Not a bad week for the Bay State.


Garrett Quinn
Garrett Quinn Garrett Quinn, Boston Magazine bmagdigital+gquinn@gmail.com