• SSTI's Annual Conference is May 2-4 2022

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The latest reporting and analysis on breakthroughs in technology-based economic development research and issues that matter most to you. To receive the SSTI Weekly Digest via email, sign up here.


2020 Halo Report: Total angel investment up, but diversity sees decrease

Despite the pandemic and economic downturn of 2020, the amount of money invested by angel investors increased more than 6 percent over 2019, according to the 2020 Halo Report, an annual report on angel investments primarily within the United States released collaboratively by the Angel Resource Institute and Pitchbook. The report provides financial metrics on seed and Series A angel investments with key insights into regional differences, while offering an analysis on the demographic trends among the CEOs of companies at these stages.

SSTI Annual Conference moving to spring 2022

In addition to the information we share through our in-person gatherings, one of the key elements of our conferences has always been the connections we make, both old and new. We always strive to bring you the best possible experience at our Annual Conference, and we know from your feedback that being able to meet in-person and network is something you value as highly as we do. As an organization with science at its core, we've been following where the science leads us throughout the pandemic. With the high level of contagion of the delta variant and the CDC's guidance that vaccinated people wear masks indoors in areas with significant and high spread, we've come to the conclusion that it is best for us to postpone our Annual Conference until spring of 2022.

Federal Reserve examines racial equity challenges within fintech

Prior to the COVID-19 outbreak and made more urgent by its financial impact on low-income households and households of color, the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco’s Fintech Team and the Aspen Institute’s Financial Security Program has been exploring how the greater racial equity goals in financial systems intersects with the growing field of digital financial technology, or fintech.

SSTI’s Dan Berglund named to NSF Committee on the Future of NSF EPSCoR

SSTI President & CEO Dan Berglund is one of 19 national experts selected for the Committee on the Future of NSF EPSCoR (Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research). EPSCoR serves as a fundamental plank in growing the university R&D enterprise for nearly half of the states and strives to increase economic development outcomes for research and broader participation across STEM R&D institutions and professional career pathways.

Primer considers policy options that could grow bioeconomy

A new Congressional Research Service (CRS) primer provides an overview of the bioeconomy and offers some potential federal policy considerations for strengthening the competitiveness of the U.S. in the global bioeconomy. Although it does not cover individual sectors that contribute to the bioeconomy, it gives a broad, macro-level perspective that may aid in a general understanding of that segment of the economy. The report offers an overview of past federal and legislative bioeconomy initiatives, but notes that it is not a comprehensive compilation of those activities.

New America seeks to support novel community college workforce development programs

New America has announced a second round of funding for their New Models for Career Preparation program, a project that aims to discover scalable principles that go into creating high-quality, non-degree programs at community colleges.

PA creating Innovation Economy Dashboard

The Pennsylvania Department of Community and Economic Development (DCED) in partnership with a student team at Carnegie Mellon University has developed a new Innovation Economy Dashboard that is intended to help inform policymaking decisions based on reliable data. The dashboard and an accompanying report on Pennsylvania’s Innovation Economy originated from Gov.

Useful Stats: Federal S&E funding to higher ed by city, institution, and type of activity in 2019

Understanding how federal funding for the science and engineering (S&E) activities of the nation’s institutions of higher education (IHEs) is distributed locally within states can help innovation leaders develop programs and policies tailored more carefully to the varying conditions of regional innovation economies.

Primer considers policy options that could grow bioeconomy

A new Congressional Research Service (CRS) primer provides an overview of the bioeconomy and offers some potential federal policy considerations for strengthening the competitiveness of the U.S. in the global bioeconomy. Although it does not cover individual sectors that contribute to the bioeconomy, it gives a broad, macro-level perspective that may aid in a general understanding of that segment of the economy. The report offers an overview of past federal and legislative bioeconomy initiatives, but notes that it is not a comprehensive compilation of those activities.

EDA launches $2 million STEM Talent Challenge

The U.S. Economic Development Administration (EDA) has launched the FY 2021 $2 million STEM Talent Challenge to support programs to train science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) talent and fuel regional innovation economies across the nation.

SBA announces new recipients of FAST awards

Yesterday, the U.S. Small Business Administration issued 33 grant awards up to $125,000 each for specialized training, mentoring, and technical assistance for research and development (R&D)-focused small businesses under the Federal and State Technology (FAST) Partnership Program.  FAST seeks to improve outcomes in the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) and Small Business Technology Transfer (STTR) Programs for underserved communities by increasing participation from women-owned, rural-based, and socially or economically disadvantaged small businesses.

Congress begins work on $3.5 trillion human infrastructure, includes $45 billion for House science to allocate

Early on Wednesday, the Senate passed a budget resolution that will serve as the framework for a human infrastructure bill. The current proposal is for $3.5 trillion in spending. This legislation, should it pass, seems likely to include substantial funding for regional innovation. More specifically, the Senate’s plans indicate that funding would support Regional Technology Hubs and other components of the US Innovation and Competition Act (USICA). 

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