Cities Left Behind in Hi-Tech Innovation

Robert D. Atkinson June 22, 2021
June 22, 2021

Rob Atkinson was a guest on "The Creative Life" by the American Creativity Association to discuss promoting policies in innovation economics, and described how to close the divide through creative self-sustaining growth centers.

It has become clear that while the future of America’s economy lies in its high-tech innovation sector, that same sector has widened the nation’s regional economic divides.

This sector fuels a growing gap between the nation’s dynamic “superstar” metropolitan areas and most everywhere else. Most notably, just 5 top innovation metro areas—Boston, San Francisco, San Jose, Seattle, and San Diego—accounted for more than 90% of the nation’s innovation-sector growth 2005 to 2017, increasing their share of the nation’s total innovation employment from 17.6% to 22.8%. In contrast, the bottom 90% of metro areas (343 of them) lost their share.

The nation needs a major push to counter these dynamics.