useful stats

Useful Stats: Higher Ed R&D expenditures and personnel in nonmetropolitan areas, 2019

Although the nation’s nonmetropolitan economies are less reliant on the R&D activity performed by institutions of higher education than the economies of urban areas, researchers in some rural areas show levels of higher education R&D (HERD) expenditures per R&D employee that are on par, or even exceed, their urban counterparts. Policy makers may wish to consider and prioritize the relative “outsized” importance of HERD funding and related research personnel in future policy decisions and public investments that are geared toward select smaller communities and rural places.

Useful Stats: R&D Personnel at Institutions of Higher Education by Metropolitan Area, 2019

The R&D performed at colleges and universities is an important driver for the innovation economy — generating new knowledge, spurring invention, training STEM talent, and supporting economic development. This edition of SSTI’s Useful Stats analyzes metropolitan-level data for 2019 from the National Science Foundation on higher education R&D (HERD) expenditures and personnel. Nearly 981,000 individuals in higher education across the U.S. were classified as R&D personnel in 2019. As shown by the green shading in the interactive map below, the metropolitan areas with the greatest total number of HERD personnel in 2019 were Baltimore, Maryland* (44,323); New York-Newark-Jersey City (43,103); Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, California (35,796); Boston-Cambridge-Newton (35,587); and Philadelphia-Camden-Wilmington (27,147).

Useful Stats: SBIR awards per 1,000 innovation research establishments by state, 2019

States often estimate their participation in the Small Business Innovation Research (SBIR) program by counting the number of awards made, total of award value, or (when available) the success rate of applications in their state. In this edition of SSTI Useful Stats, we attempt to go beyond these measures to estimate states’ untapped potential for capturing future SBIR awards. This creates a baseline proxy for tailoring and assessing a state’s outreach and support activities.

Useful Stats: Higher Ed R&D intensity by metro, 2019

Metropolitan areas in the U.S. with fewer than 370,000 residents are more likely to be more economically reliant on R&D performed by colleges and universities than larger metros, according to new SSTI analysis. Three data points are used to consider how R&D at institutions of higher education is impacting a region’s economy: NSF’s Higher Education R&D (HERD) data on expenditures at individual institutions; metro area Gross Domestic Product (GDP) data from the Bureau of Economic Analysis; and population estimates from the Census Bureau. The resulting analysis shows that despite larger metro areas producing a greater total amount of HERD, they are typically less reliant on these expenditures directly powering their economies.

Useful Stats: Higher Education R&D expenditures by state and field, 2019

Given higher education’s role in generating the knowledge that catalyzes innovative new technologies developed by high-growth startups, R&D conducted at institutions of higher education is one of the most important metrics for evaluating an area’s innovation economy. This edition of Useful Stats examines NSF’s recently updated Higher Education R&D (HERD) survey, finding that most states, although not all, experienced growth in HERD expenditures from 2018 to 2019. This analysis also examines 2019 state HERD expenditures by R&D field, finding that life sciences accounted for the lion’s share of HERD spending in every state except Alaska, typically followed by either engineering; the physical sciences; or the geological, atmospheric, and ocean sciences.

SSTI examines state R&D investment as a share of state GDP, 2009-2018

Industry investment in research and development (R&D) indicates, literally, how invested each state’s businesses are in creating new products and processes. To better-understand industry’s commitment to innovation, business R&D can be viewed as a percentage of each state’s private sector gross domestic product (GDP), providing a measure of research intensity. This measure highlights substantial differences in the orientation of states’ businesses toward research, with some states seeing an investment rate of less than 1 percent while others are above 5 percent.

Useful Stats: Top industries by contribution to county GDP, 2019

This week’s edition of Useful Stats examines the contributions to county-level GDP in 2019 by industry group. Specifically, this analysis identifies the industries that contributed the most to the economic output of each county in 2019, finding that the real estate and rental and leasing; manufacturing; and government and government enterprises industry groups were vital economic drivers in terms of both their contributions to national GDP as well as the number of counties where they were the top contributor.

Useful Stats: Annual change in county GDP per capita, 2018 to 2019

A large majority (nearly 87 percent) of U.S. counties showed growth in their gross domestic product (GDP) from 2018 to 2019, according to an SSTI analysis of data from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis (BEA). GDP is the measure for the total value of goods and services produced in an area, and is one of the primary economic indicators used by researchers and policymakers. This edition of Useful Stats examines the recently updated (BEA) data and provides an analysis of 2019 total county GDP, 2019 county GDP per capita, and the percent change in each measure from 2018 to 2019.

Useful stats: Later-stage VC has a banner year, uncertainty about early stages

Deals raising at least $50 million grew by nearly one-quarter in 2020, driving an additional $18 billion in deal value to a new record of $156 billion invested. This data, from the PitchBook-NVCA Venture Monitor, suggests that the total venture capital market will see a slight decline in investment deals overall from 2020.[1] This slip in deal activity is driven by what is currently an 11 percent decline in seed or angel deals and a 20 percent decline in early venture capital deals.

Useful Stats: State business R&D performance paid for by companies, 2009-2018

A thriving innovation economy requires a robust R&D enterprise — with participation by academia, government, and the private sector. As a substantial performer and funder of R&D in the United States, the strength of private industry’s R&D activity in a region can provide an indication of the region’s capacity for bringing innovative technologies to market. Using data from the recent release of the National Science Foundation’s 2018 Business Enterprise R&D Survey, this SSTI analysis shows that while total R&D performed domestically by private companies in 2018 increased over 2017, as did the share of the R&D that was paid for by companies, this was not the case for all states.


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