Innovate 2 Innovation – An Assessment of California’s Innovation Ecosystem (Phase I)

Author(s): Hall, Randolph; Miller, William F.; Sullivan, Bob; Traina, Sam; Zornetzer, Steve

Release Date: February 10, 2011 | Last Updated Date: February 20, 2015


This document was produced in response to a request from a bi-partisan group of California Legislators, which asked CCST to assess the state’s innovation ‘ecosystem’ and offer a specific list of recommendations for legislators to enhance the state’s ability to foster and benefit from innovation.

To prepare its response to the Legislators’ request, CCST convened a series of roundtables with academic, industry and research leaders across the state in late 2010 to seek their input on the challenges faced by California and possible solutions that could be achieved by building from California’s S&T capacity. From these meetings, CCST identified two key strategies essential to achieve this task:

  • Developing and leveraging public-private partnerships linking California’s assets in education, research, technology, finance, and philanthropy to create social and technical innovations that competitors with less complete infrastructure cannot match.
  • Enlisting California’s international competitiveness by enlisting California’s S&T community in finding solutions to two of the State’s major challenges, education and water.

The primary recommendation in the assessment is to bring together public and private leaders to focus on California’s innovation and competitiveness infrastructure. This ‘Innovation Action Team (IAT)’, comprised of leaders from universities, industry, and government, will be charged to develop an Innovation Roadmap that will include specific recommendations for improving California’s critical innovation infrastructure, according to the report.

This preliminary report and the roundtable summaries represent Phase I of a three phase project. More detailed recommendations are to follow by the end of May 2011.