Here at Free Enterprise, we’ve been developing articles and research to figure out what we, as citizens, business supporters, investors, local officials, and entrepreneurs can do to harness the power of startups to solve key problems.

In partnership with the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation and 1776, last year we launched “Innovation that Matters,” a research program designed to identify and explain how to create local innovation economies and leverage entrepreneurial thought to address the major challenges of our time.

In its first iteration, Innovation That Matters made clear the benefits to cities of focusing on fostering innovation economies that drive startup success in areas that matter most to citizens. And through analyzing data and conversations with local experts, the five guiding principles necessary to this endeavor emerged.

The second edition of Innovation that Matters analyzed 25 cities across the country to discover how urban leaders support startup activity, determine what’s working and what’s not, and identify which cities are setting themselves up to capitalize on the shift to a digital economy.

Make sure to take a closer look at our 2016 list of innovative cities entrepreneurs recommend below.

Also, follow along as we detail what we’re learning and who we’re meeting in these great cities.

Eco Tech Startups are Blazing a Greener Path in Portland’s ‘Silicon Forest’

Green tech startups are not only growing innovative environmental solutions in Portland, Ore., they’re also driving the Pacific Northwestern city’s burgeoning entrepreneurial ecosystem forward. Increasingly referred to as “Silicon Forest,” the Beaver State’s largest city is home to several vibrant startup niches, including education and health tech. But none has seen as much growth over the past decade as the clean tech sector, according to the 2017 Innovation That Matters report. The city ranked 10th on the freshly released extensive analysis, which examined the health of technology-driven startup ecosystems in 25 American cities. The report was conducted by 1776, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce Foundation, the U.S. Chamber Technology Engagement Center (C__TEC) and FreeEnterprise.com. Dozens of established and nascent environmental technology-focused enterprises have cropped up in and around the City of Roses in recent years. Stephen Green, an economist, entrepreneur and board member of the state’s Oregon Growth Board, says […]

Eco Tech Startups are Blazing a Greener Path in Portland’s ‘Silicon Forest’

Silicon Cities | True innovation

Meet The Real Estate Techpreneurs Behind Portland’s Burgeoning Startup Scene

Find out how these tech-savvy real estate entrepreneurs are driving Portland, Oregon's innovation ecosystem forward.

Meet The Real Estate Techpreneurs Behind Portland’s Burgeoning Startup Scene

America at work | Silicon Cities

Tomorrow’s Silicon Valley? A Look At America’s 7 Hottest Startup Cities (Infographic)

From Seattle to Philadelphia, these are the top 7 American cities to see the most innovative entrepreneurial ecosystem improvement over the last year.

Tomorrow’s Silicon Valley? A Look At America’s 7 Hottest Startup Cities (Infographic)

America at work | Silicon Cities

This May Be The Biggest Barrier Stunting America’s Innovative Startups

The most pervasive barrier stymying the advancement of tech-focused American startups can be boiled down into one word: disconnectedness.

This May Be The Biggest Barrier Stunting America’s Innovative Startups

Silicon Cities | True innovation

Hollywood Startups Step Into The Spotlight

Hollywood is shining bright as a hotbed of technology startup activity. Fueled by access to film studios, storytellers and stars, more and more digital entrepreneurs are setting up shop in the entertainment capital of the world to make their mark.

Hollywood Startups Step Into The Spotlight

Silicon Cities | True innovation

This North Carolina City Has Emerged as the Startup Capital of the South

Find out why Durham is attracting ambitious innovators and investors from Silicon Valley, New York City, Boston and beyond.

This North Carolina City Has Emerged as the Startup Capital of the South

America at work | Silicon Cities

How Durham’s Health Tech Startups are Changing the City – and Future – of Medicine

Find out how a new wave of tech-focused health care startups are carrying Durham’s “City of Medicine” reputation into the modern era.

How Durham’s Health Tech Startups are Changing the City – and Future – of Medicine

Silicon Cities | True innovation

Meet the Military Veterans on the Front Lines of Phoenix’s Tech Startup Revolution

Military veterans are the newest foot soldiers to join the ranks of entrepreneurs powering Phoenix’s transformation into an unlikely startup oasis.

Meet the Military Veterans on the Front Lines of Phoenix’s Tech Startup Revolution

Creating opportunity | Silicon Cities

Phoenix Rising: How A Tech Startup Oasis Emerged in the Arizona Desert

A growing number of entrepreneurs have started and scaled innovative companies in Phoenix, cultivating a blossoming tech ecosystem in what was once a startup desert.

Phoenix Rising: How A Tech Startup Oasis Emerged in the Arizona Desert

Creating opportunity | Silicon Cities
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