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Secretary Gregory Bialecki, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development

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Secretary Gregory Bialecki, Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development

The Governor and I have had many, many conversations with leaders in our innovation economy over the last two and a half years. The overwhelming consensus has been that we have all of the building blocks necessary for a dynamic innovation economy – plenty of good ideas fostered by a very active and diverse research environment, strong entrepreneurial talent, access to venture capital, and access to a highly educated workforce.  But the overwhelming consensus is also that we are missing the collaborative “glue” that is needed to bring all these elements together and truly unlock our innovation potential.

Some have gone so far as to say that folks around here are missing the collaborative gene Can Boston lure the best? . We won’t go that far, but we readily agree that the collaborative gene has been far too dormant. So we think that one of the most important things that state government can do to promote innovation in Massachusetts and New England is to applaud and support every effort we can find that activates our collaborative gene.

For example:

•    Boston World Partnerships, a web-based networking effort created by Mayor Tom Menino to connect members of Boston's business and civic community with their counterparts from around the world. I am pleased to serve on the board of Boston World Partnerships.

•    Stay in MA  – a scholarship program funded by local venture capital firm Flybridge Capital Partners . The program allows Massachusetts college students to attend events in the local business community.

•   MassChallenge , a new state-wide business plan creation contest that will encourage, mentor and reward entrepreneurs with innovative ideas who will start their new businesses and create jobs in Massachusetts. The Commonwealth is proud to be one of the founding sponsors of this competition, along with Desh Deshpande, the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation, and Microsoft.

What are we missing?
What do you see as the best examples of local collaboration in the innovation economy?

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