The Consumer Technology Association (CTA) has released their 2016 Innovation Scorecard, an annual index that grades every state and the District of Columbia based off their adoption of policies that drive economic growth, employment, and innovation. As can be seen by home values (and tight inventory) in tech hubs like Seattle and Silicon Valley, innovation is a huge driver of job growth and consequently, the demand for new housing.
Based off their overall score across 10 qualitative and quantitative criteria, states fall into four categories: Innovation Champions, Innovation Leaders, Innovation Adopters, and Modest Innovators. Twelve states and the District of Columbia earned highest marks in the 2016 index as Innovation Champions.
For the second year in a row, D.C. earned top grades in six of the 10 Scorecard categories, a significant achievement considering the small size of the capital district. California earned the top score for attracting investment, with over $32 billion in total funding (more venture capital and research and development funding than every other state put together), but despite being home to Silicon Valley, the state misses the mark to be included in the Innovation Champion category, due the state's "continued burdensome regulations on energy efficiency and unfavorable tax policies."
Specifically, eight of the 10 quantitative and qualitative criteria below (not all states receive scores for sustainable policies and drone policies) are graded in every state and the District of Columbia:
- Right-to-Work laws: states that allow "union security agreements" that make it mandatory for worker to participate in established labor unions receive a F
- The number of STEM-related degrees per 1,000 individuals age 18-24 years-old
- Investment-per-capita in government and corporate research and development to determine the level of venture capital investment
- State and municipal laws/regulations affecting new business models (like ridesharing and homesharing)
- The average number of small firms created per capital and net job creation by those firms
- Tax policies that allow firms to create more jobs, keep more money earned, and increase development investment
- The number of jobs per-capita in tech related field (which signals a state's ability "to grow and attract well-education talent and high-wage employers")
- Adoption of innovation-friendly sustainable policies
- Average internet connection speed in kilobits-per-second
- Drone policies (states that added drones to the list of technology covered under existing privacy laws and passed legislation that prevent counties and cities from restricting or prohibiting the testing or operation of drones received higher marks, while states that created new drone-specific crimes and policies to regulate drones that conflict with existing federal regulation received lower marks)
The following states received highest marks for tech jobs per capita, and could be home to rising markets that will demand greater housing inventory in years to come:
- Washington D.C.
Tech jobs per capita: 0.1685
Employees in the technology field: 101,410
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0560
Employees in the technology field: 448,820
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0555
Employees in the technology field: 363,980
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0501
Employees in the technology field: 289,770
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0493
Employees in the technology field: 261,860
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0489
Employees in the technology field: 246,310
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0485
Employees in the technology field: 326,520
- New Hampshire
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0433
Employees in the technology field: 57,050
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0426
Employees in the technology field: 117,940
Tech jobs per capita: 0.0421
Employees in the technology field: 150,470
View the full report to see state-by-state profiles and state rankings for each category in the index.