A number of interesting and high quality regional benchmarking reports have been released in recent weeks. These include:
The 2011-2012 Michigan Entrepreneurship Scorecard: This very comprehensive report tracks Michigan’s performance on dozens of measures ranging from things like new business starts or job growth to measures such as energy security or airport performance. This report is helpful to non-Michiganders as well as the data tracks the performance of every state in the US.
2011 Index of the Massachusetts Innovation Economy: We might consider this study to be the “granddaddy” of innovation benchmarking. It’s been produced every year since 1997, and it’s still one of the best such efforts now underway. The Index tracks 25 sets of measures, with a heavy focus on capital, talent, and technology. While the report finds some problem areas, such as declines in education spending, the overall findings provide further confirmation of Massachusetts’ position as a national and global leader in technology and innovation.
The Illinois Innovation Index: This interesting effort is a collaborative project of several groups operating in Chicago and statewide. Instead of producing a thick annual benchmarking report, Innovation Illinois is publishing monthly updates that dig deeper into one source of data or one set of issues. The latest March 2012 issue assesses the role of patenting activity in the Illinois economy. Other issues have
looked at R&D spending and entrepreneurial optimism.
If you’re interested in this work, you might consider joining me and my colleague Graham Toft, the creator of the Michigan Scorecard, at an upcoming training session on how to build your own regional innovation index. This session will be held at the Manufacturing Extension Partnership’s annual conference in Orlando, FL on May
6, 2012. You can learn more here. Hope to see you there.