Venture Lab

Connected Cities Northwest: How Our Region is using Innovation to Improve Quality of Life

Once upon a time, innovation was an isolationist sport. In America’s innovative economy 30 years ago, an innovation worker drove to a nondescript office campus along a suburban corridor, worked in a cubicle alone, and kept all innovations under tight wraps.

Today, there is more openness in innovation. It has created more and more innovation clusters. Innovators work and live in urban places that are walkable, bikeable, and connected by transit. They share ideas. They collaborate. Major companies across sectors practice “open innovation” and want to be close to other firms, research labs, and universities. Entrepreneurs start their companies in collaborative spaces, share ideas, and have efficient access to everything from legal advice to sophisticated lab equipment.

In short, civic leaders are playing a much more active role in innovation than they ever have. They create the ecosystem for the innovators of today to deliver their new ideas to market.

The MIT Enterprise Forum will convene city leaders from the Pacific Northwest to share their best practices to promote innovation, advance innovation, and expand economic opportunity for all.