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The American Heartland's Position in the Innovation Economy

July 31, 2018
Jonas CrewsShelly Wisecarver
Heartland States Lag Behind Coastal States in the Innovation Economy

The innovation capacities of places are a key driver of long-term economic performance in the United States, other advanced nations, and emerging nations. The states and regions who invest in and nurture innovative activities and build human capital will establish ecosystems that create high-paying jobs for their citizens and attract migrants from other states and nations, boosting economic growth further. This paper evaluates the American Heartland’s position in the innovation economy relative to the rest of the country. We identify key strengths, but also identify gaps that should be narrowed through the development and implementation of thoughtful, well-articulated public policy.