MA Ranked as Most Innovative State in U.S.

Thursday, March 22, 2018
GoLocalWorcester Business Team

Massachusetts is ranked as the most innovative state in the country, according to a recent study completed by WalletHub.

“Innovation is a principal driver of U.S. economic growth. In 2018, the U.S. will spend an estimated $553 billion on research and development — more than any other country in the world and over 25% of the world’s total — helping the nation rank No. 4 on the Global Innovation Index. According to the results of the ranking, knowledge, and technology outputs are America’s particular strengths,” said WalletHub.

MA’s Rankings

  • 1st - Human Capital
  • 2nd Best - Innovation Environment
  • 4th - Highest Share of STEM Professionals
  • 5th - Highest Projected STEM-Job Demand by 2020
  • 4th Best - 8th Grade Math and Science Performance
  • 5th - Highest Share of Science & Engineering Graduates Ages 25 +
  • T-1st- Highest R&D Spending per Capita
  • 3rd - Fastest Average Internet Speed
  • T-1st - Highest Venture-Capital Funding per Capita


The Rankings

The top five are:

1. Massachusetts

2. Maryland

3. Washington

4. District of Columbia

5. California

51. Mississippi

See the full Rankings in the Map Below

Source: WalletHub

The Method

In order to determine the most and least innovative states, WalletHub compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across two key dimensions, “Human Capital” and “Innovation Environment.”

They evaluated those dimensions using 22 relevant metrics, which are listed below with their corresponding weights.

WalletHub then determined each state’s weighted average across all metrics to calculate its “State Innovation Index” and used the resulting scores to rank-order our sample.

Human Capital – Total Points: 50

  • Share of STEM Professionals: Double Weight (~14.29 Points)
  • Share of Science & Engineering & Related Fields Graduates: Full Weight (~7.14 Points)
  • Projected STEM-Job Demand by 2020: Full Weight (~7.14 Points)
  • Scientific-Knowledge Output: Full Weight (~7.14 Points)
  • Eighth-Grade Math & Science Performance: Full Weight (~7.14 Points)
  • AP Exam Participation: Full Weight (~7.14 Points)


Innovation Environment – Total Points: 50

  • Share of Technology Companies: Double Weight (~5.13 Points)
  • R&D Spending per Capita: Double Weight (~5.13 Points)
  • R&D Intensity: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Invention Patents per Capita: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • IP Services Exports as a Share of All Services Exports: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Business Churn: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Jobs in New Companies: Double Weight (~5.13 Points)
  • Net Migration: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Entrepreneurial Activity: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Tax-Friendliness: Double Weight (~5.13 Points)
  • Industry-Cluster Strength: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Open Roads & Skies Friendly Laws: Half Weight (~1.28 Points)
  • Average Internet Speed: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Share of Households with Broadband Internet Access: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Venture-Capital Funding per Capita: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)
  • Average Annual Federal Small-Business Funding per GDP: Full Weight (~2.56 Points)


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