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An Inside Look | The State of Innovation in GA

by Tricia Whitlock

Last week the Atlanta Regional Commission hosted a State of the Region Breakfast focused on innovation and the many opportunities the Atlanta region offers entrepreneurs and technology startups.

Atlanta’s Mayor Kasim Reed delivered the keynote address “Innovation by Design,” and here are a few of his major takeaways:

  • The Kauffman Foundation ranks us #4 in innovation
  • Linking our tech community to our Fortune 500 companies will give more credibility to smaller enterprises and facilitate growth. “We have the opportunity to dominate the southeast” as a hot spot for tech company acquisition. Atlanta currently ranks #8 for tech company acquisitions.
  • We are in the list of top 10 cities for foreign direct investment.
  • There needs to be a focus on retaining tech savvy students. “50% of GT students are leaving the metro area after they graduate.”
  • “We have to be the center for where the smart people in the southeast come.”

A Look at Metro Atlanta’s Innovation Capacity from Startup Atlanta:

More than 20 regional partners worked with Collaborative Economics to evaluate 13 indicators of innovation for the first-ever Metro Atlanta Innovation Indicators Project. The project was commissioned to examine the diverse innovation activities within metro Atlanta’s large and complex regional economy. Check out the slides below for the results. (It’s a bit long so if you are going to just flip through it be sure to stop on pages 5, 11, 12, 14, 17, 21-28.)

[Photo Credit]

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