Over the past two decades, changing market demands and demographic preferences have led to a revaluation of urban places, and a shift in the geography of the growing innovation economy This evolution can be seen in the increased clustering--often around universities, medical centers, and other anchors--of firms, intermediaries, and innovative workers in dense urban districts or "hubs." City and, increasingly, suburban stakeholders are exploring ways to support this growth as a means of fostering job creation, economic opportunity, and revitalization in their communities.
Brookings defines innovation districts as "dense enclaves that merge the innovation and employment potential of research-oriented anchor institutions, high-growth firms, and tech and creative start-ups in well-designed, amenity-rich residential and commercial environments."
Assessing Your Innovation District: A How-To Guide outlines a five-part integrated framework for conducting an innovation ecosystem asset audit. The guide is designed to reveal how to best target resources toward innovative and inclusive economic development tailored to an area's unique strengths and challenges. It centers on five major questions.
(1) Where are your...