The Innovation Institute understands the Massachusetts economy as containing seven distinct regions: Greater Boston, Northeast, Southeast, Central, Pioneer Valley, Berkshires and the Cape & Islands.
While Greater Boston is an acknowledged commercial and cultural hub of New England, the Innovation Institute understands the Massachusetts economy as regions that are quite distinct one from the other with regard to all of the innovation economy drivers: capital, higher education, talent, public and utility infrastructure, etc.
The MassDiGI Example
Our deep appreciation for the differences and challenges is exemplified through the formation of what we today call MassDiGI.
When Lieutenant Governor Murray asked the Innovation Institute to assist Becker College with the creation of a collaboration for the videogame industry in 2010, it was evident that there was a very special opportunity to seed the roots for each region to engage in growing their own unique alliances between industry and academia. Fast forward to today where MassDiGI productively engages in different ways in the Pioneer Valley, Central Mass and Greater Boston; so much so that the U.S. Economic Development Administration (U.S. EDA) has recognized and funded MassDiGI a “university center” for the digital games industry in New England.
U.S. EDA, Becker College and scores of other leading institutions understand that the New England economy historically was shaped by rivers. These regional economies have epicenters that are as much north-south oriented as east-west oriented. While we do have a determined perspective to understand our economy through the lens of industry sectors we have an even deeper appreciation that each region needs to foster an ecosystem of innovation which is suited to the organic flows of commerce, communications, media and people. We never force fit solutions on regions, but instead seek to tap or animate the leadership forums within each region that have emerged from the businesses and institutions which reside at the foundation of each region’s economy.