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New York City Leads The Way in Startup-Supportive Policy

 |  NYCEDC

New York City ranked first in a survey of 40 global cities, in the way it utilizes technology to foster an innovative economy.

In its first ever study of economic innovation, City Initiatives for Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship (CITIE) named New York City #1 in the world for a public policy ecosystem that is supportive of startups. Placing ahead of London, Helsinki, Barcelona, and Amsterdam, New York City’s long-term investment in tech appears to have paid off.

The 56-page study, sponsored by British charity Nesta, management consultancy firm Accenture, and Future Cities Catapult, analyzed 40 international cities in dimensions including “openness, infrastructure, and leadership.”

New York City’s greatest strength was its role as a strategist, developing world-class infrastructure that allows for clear, consistent development and innovation. The NYCEDC-led Applied Sciences Initiative, based at the Cornell-Tech Campus, helped carve out a physical campus that helped anchor, and demonstrated the City’s commitment to the tech sector.

“New York City prioritized innovation and entrepreneurship earlier than other comparable cities, [taking] an extremely active stance towards its start-up and tech communities over the last few years.”

2015 CITIE Study 

The City also ranked highly as an advocate, customer, host, investor, “digital governor” (enabling citizens’ use of tech through open data programs like the BigApps competition), and “datavore” (optimizing city services and maintaining open communication with the public).

nycbigapps blog

The report found New York City’s only shortcoming to be the regulation of some of the technology it otherwise encourages. Cities around the world face the common challenge of regulating newer business models in the sharing economy. 

Particular praise was given to New York City’s investment in its youth, highlighting apprenticeships in the tech industry and the use of coding courses in New York City school curriculums as evidence of Mayor de Blasio’s goal of making the tech sector more inclusive and accessible.

“As New York City’s relatively young tech sector continues to grow,” the report concludes, “the City can feel confident that it is doing its bit to provide the right conditions for innovation and entrepreneurship to flourish.”

Read the full CITIE report here.

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