Brookings report ranks Madison high for high-tech output growth

Brookings report ranks Madison high for high-tech output growth

By Judy Newman,

EpicSystems_wsjMadison is one of the top cities in the U.S. when it comes to growth in the tech-heavy industries that are pushing the nation’s economy forward, a report says.

The Brookings Institution says the “advanced industries” sector produced $7.3 billion worth of goods and services in the Madison area in 2015, and has grown 8.06 percent a year, on average, since 2013. It’s the fifth-highest growth rate in advanced industries output among the nation’s 100 biggest metropolitan areas, says the report released Thursday.

Brookings, a Washington, D.C., nonprofit public policy organization, has coined the term “advanced industries” to refer to 50 industries that spend the most on research and development and employ the largest numbers of workers in the STEM (science, technology, engineering or math) fields.

Because of the sector’s innovation and technological advancements, it is responsible for 60 percent of U.S. exports though it represents less than 10 percent of the nation’s employment, Brookings says, and employees in those businesses are paid nearly twice as much as those in other sectors of the U.S. economy. Read more …