14 Jun Life Science: From Chicago to the Twin Cities: All tech roads lead to Wisconsin
Editor’s Note: The Wisconsin Technology Council has published the first-ever magazine about Wisconsin’s life sciences industry. The 24-page publication highlights the state’s research base, technology-transfer process, company creation, quality of life, key contacts and the “I-Q Corridor” that joins Chicago, Wisconsin and Minneapolis-St. Paul.
The Wisconsin Technology Network has arranged to post excerpts from “Life Sciences: Wisconsin – The Smart Choice,” over the next few weeks. Today we present part 5. Stay tuned for more chapters!
From Chicago to the Twin Cities: All Tech roads lead to Wisconsin
Wisconsin lies in the heart of the “I-Q Corridor,” a region that boasts Chicago and the Twin Cities of Minneapolis-St. Paul as its economic bookends, with a well-stocked shelf of technology development assets between.
Ideas, intellectual property, innovative spirit and investment capital make up four of the “I’s” in the I-Q.Corridor.
The fifth is the interstate highway system that binds Chicago, Milwaukee, the Rockford-Beloit-Janesville area, Madison, the Fox and Chippewa valleys and the Twin Cities of St. Paul and Minneapolis. Within a span of about 400 miles, which is about 100 miles less than what separates California’s high-tech centers of San Diego and San Francisco, lies a significant chunk of the nation’s research universities, tech workers and early-stage companies.
Economic competition in the 21st century will be led by states and regions that capture markets beyond their borders.
Identifiable regions such as the I-Q Corridor (where the “Q” stands for quality people, schools, lifestyle and environment) will flourish by producing globally competitive goods and services.
Wisconsin’s life sciences resources leverage those in Chicago and the Twin Cities, and vice versa.
In the Twin Cities, a history of innovative companies and risk-taking investors has produced one of the nation’s leading medical device clusters and leaders in agribusiness and information technology. The Minnesota Miracle may soon extend to biotechnology, due to the emergence of new state initiatives, cooperation between the University of Minnesota and the Mayo Clinic, and a burst of investment in research buildings.
Tech leaders in Minnesota are betting the next wave of tech success will be interdisciplinary – with biotechnology, medical devices and IT melding into fields such as bioinformatics. That’s the approach in Wisconsin, as well, where the UW-Madison, the Medical College of Wisconsin and the Marshfield Clinic are all taking an interdisciplinary approach to research and company spinoffs.
In Chicago, the recent Midwest-Japan Biotechnology Summit provided the latest evidence that the nation’s Heartland is becoming a heart-throb for life science investors and companies. Major Japanese pharmaceutical companies such as Fujisawa, Sankyo and Takeda see the I-Q Corridor as an emerging cluster of research, workers and start-up companies – and a place where the business deals are less “picked over” than those they may find on the East and West coasts of the United States.
The “I-Q Corridor” is more than a branding slogan. It’s a place where Midwest technology, values and people meet the global economy.
This article was reproduced with permission, courtesy of the Wisconsin Technology Council, from their recently published Wisconsin Life Science magazine. All rights reserved.