2016 Index

MassTech produces and publishes the Annual Index of the Massachusetts Innovation Economy, the Commonwealth’s tool for benchmarking the status and progress of our innovation economy.2016 Innovation Index Cover

Since 1997, the Index has provided users with a wealth of data and information for assessing the performance and progress of the Commonwealth’s innovation sectors. Through an analysis of 22 economic indicators, the Index offers a comprehensive view of several dimensions of the innovation ecosystem. 

The 2016 edition of the Index represents the 20th anniversary of the first publication. Click here to download a copy or click on the image to the right. 

For more in-depth study, you can review the Raw Data files for each of the 22 indicators measured in the Index or examine the 2016 Indicator Highlights, which focus on five key aspects of the Mass. Innovation Economy (IE) in Massachusetts, including:

  • Capital;
  • Economic Impact;
  • Research;
  • Talent; and
  • Technology & Business Development.

Indicator 8- Utility Patents Issued | Massachusetts, 1997-2015

Using a robust selection of data sources, the Index benchmarks Massachusetts against 15 Leading Technology States (LTS) throughout the United States to reveal relative strengths and weaknesses.

Massachusetts Profile and 2016 Leading Technology States

Also included in the Index is a Special Analysis section that is conceptualized as a forward-looking but directly relevant assessment and commentary on a critical issue in the Commonwealth and its innovation economy.

Cumulative Net Job Growth

In 1997, the best year for net job creation on record, Massachusetts was in the midst of a broad-based national economic upswing.  However, the dot-com bubble burst in 2001 and Massachusetts suffered a severe recession, losing 160,000 jobs between 2001-2004, worse than the 124,000 jobs lost during the Great Recession of 2008.  Between recessions, Massachusetts never fully recovered the jobs lost during 2001-2004.  Yet since 2010, Massachusetts has created 251,000 net jobs, erasing the losses suffered during the 2000s.  Since 1994, Massachusetts has created 553,000 net jobs while the labor force has grown by only 342,000, resulting in the unemployment rate dropping from 5.9% in 1994 to 3.9% now.


With the guidance and advice of its Advisory Committee, the Innovation Institute revisits the indicators and framework annually to remain current with the evolving understanding of the Innovation Economy in order to provide timely insights into its strengths and weaknesses.


Past Indexes


The Index is an important tool enabling stakeholders and policymakers to engage in dialogue, and to ask and answer: What will it take to preserve, enhance, strengthen and grow the industry clusters of the knowledge based innovation economy in Massachusetts?

For questions or to learn more about the Innovation Index please contact William Fuqua.