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Going High-Tech in West Virginia

Mark Marich

Business and political leaders in West Virginia are getting serious about nurturing technology and innovation in the Mountain State. TechConnect West Virginia, the state’s advocate for technology-based economic development, has unveiled a new blueprint for strengthening the state's technology sector.

West Virginia’s economy has traditionally been built on coal, chemicals, and natural resources. Moving ahead, it must build new strengths in key sectors like biometrics, advanced materials, and advanced energy.

The state has long way to go, as it currently ranks 49th in Milken Institute’s annual rankings of state technology economies as well as 49th in the State New Economy Index (see p. 12) published by the Kauffman Foundation. 

In addition to targeting the industry sectors listed earlier, the blueprint also aims at addressing key gaps in the West Virginia’s current innovation ecosystems. These suggested strategies include building more support entrepreneurial culture, enhancing the availability of early-stage capital, and developing a more supportive and business-friendly regulatory environment.

Report: "West Virginia Blueprint for Technology-Based Economic Development," published by TechConnect West Virginia

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