N.H. ranks 13th on innovation index

New Hampshire ranks 13th in the nation and third in New England for its ability to adapt to the changing economic landscape, according to the 2007 State New Economy Index released by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and The Information Technology & Innovation Foundation.

The index weighed 26 indicators to determine how well the economies of each state are structured and operate to compete regionally and globally and how each state is making the transition from an “old industrial economic model” to a more “global-, knowledge- and innovation-based New Economy.”

“The most distinctive feature of the new economy is its relentless levels of structural economic change,” said Carl Schramm, president and CEO of the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. “The magnitude, speed and reach of these changes have profoundly reshaped state economies over the past decade. States that have adapted to these new realities will be in the best position to see strong growth in the standard of living for their residents.”

New Hampshire received its 13th placed national ranking with a score of 71.1 – third in the New England region however. The state’s highest-ranked indicators included workforce education, immigration of knowledge workers, foreign direct investment and inventor patents.

Massachusetts ranked first nationally with a score of 96.1. Connecticut was sixth with 81.8 and Vermont and Maine were 20th and 32nd, respectively, with scores of 64.5 and 55.6.

The Northeast, Mid-Atlantic, Mountain West and Pacific regions ranked highest and the Midwest, Great Plains and South ranked lower.

Above-average levels of entrepreneurship, positioning in the IT and Internet revolutions and strong acceptance of the digital economy were all traits shared by the states ranking highest, the researchers said.

Lower-ranked states maintained a higher dependency on natural resources or mass production manufacturing and choose low costs over innovative capacity to gain an advantage, they said. – TRACIE STONE

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