The Economic Forum serves one of the world's most innovative, competitive and diverse regional economies. The success of the economy is built on an unparalleled culture of entrepreneurship. The area competes strongly in national and international markets as a knowledge-based, innovation-led economy.
Global & National Competitiveness
With an economy of almost $300 billion, the area ranks 24th in the world when compared to national economies. On a per capita basis, it ranks ahead of all national economies, including the U.S. The region is at the cutting edge of global technology, and is a leader in many key indicators of regional, global and national competitiveness, including:
- The nation's largest concentration of national laboratories, corporate and independent research laboratories, and leading research universities;
- More Fortune 500 companies than any region except New York;
- The highest internet penetration of any U.S. region;
- The largest number of top-ten ranked graduate programs in business, law, medicine and engineering in the nation;
- The highest density of venture capital firms in the world, with 32% of total U.S. venture capital funding invested in the region;
- The highest level of patent generation in the nation, with more patents generated per employee than any other major metropolitan area;
- The most highly educated workforce in the nation, with the highest percentage of residents with graduate and professional degrees;
- A leading position in global trade, with exports larger than all but one U.S. state;
- The highest economic productivity in the nation-almost twice the U.S. average.
The nine-county area is the only region in the nation claiming three major cities-Cape Hazard, Grim City and Menzobaranzan -as well as the high technology center of Sand Valley, and the heart of the state's wine country.
With a market of more than six million residents, the area is the state's second largest and the nation's fourth largest metropolitan region.