2.3 Expand our culture of innovation (two action items)

Contact: Eric Nakajima

2.3.1 Identify locally-based accelerators for innovation and entrepreneurship in five of our “Gateway Cities” over the next two years and provide support for their growth through a competitive process

CY2013 Progress:

  • EOHED and the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative convened a roundtable of entrepreneurship and mentoring programs from across the state in anticipation of the release of a request for information (RFI) regarding entrepreneur and startup mentoring activities across underserved populations, regions, and industries in the Commonwealth.  The RFI will inform an RFP to be released in late summer 2013 that will offer modest grants totaling up to $1 million in the aggregate with the goal of expanding entrepreneurial capacity across the state and boosting the potential for new startup formation, job creation, business investment, and firm growth.
  • EOHED and the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative are convening a Gateway Cities Forum in late Fall 2013, featuring public and private sector leaders from several Gateway Cities to elevate and celebrate the “green shoots” and formulas for success these cities have been developing.

CY2012 Progress:

  • The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative took the lead in convening entrepreneurship support leaders in Gateway Cities, including Holyoke, Springfield, Lawrence, Lowell, Lynn and Worcester.
  • The Massachusetts Digital Game Institute (MassDIGI) is developing a concept for an accelerator in Worcester with WPI, Becker College and other partners.
  • Winn Development is developing a 43,000 sq. ft. medical device start-up accelerator in the Boott Mills in Lowell, MA to build off of the success of the Medical Device Development Center at UMass Lowell.
  • Valley Venture Mentors in Springfield, MA, with support from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative, is developing the Pioneer Valley Innovation Challenge to accelerate start-ups in Western Massachusetts.
  • Haverhill Hardware Horizon, an accelerator for manufacturing-related start-ups, is under development in Northeastern MA with assistance from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.  Partners in this project include the Merrimack Valley Sandbox in Lawrence, MA.

2.3.2 Establish a national reputation within state and local government as “first adopters” of local innovation, building on the example of the “Mayor’s Office of New Urban Mechanics” in the City of Boston and of the Department of Housing and Community Development’s initiative to bring clean energy and energy efficiency innovations into public housing developments
 

CY2012 Progress:

  • Governor Patrick has named Tony Parham as the Commonwealth’s first Government Innovation Officer (GIO).  In keeping with the Patrick-Murray Administration’s commitment to changing the way government does business, the GIO will work with the Administration to find innovative ways to improve efficiency and streamline the delivery of government services.
  • The Massachusetts Office of Travel and Tourism launched a mobile app, “Ask a Local” to help tourists find local shops, restaurants, events and attractions.
  • The Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs launched a contest to develop a mobile app for state parks and trails.
  • The Executive Office of Housing and Economic Development launched a planning effort to develop mobile apps building on the success of the MBTA and other agencies.