Five Core WIB Roles


Understanding the Nature of Innovation

"We're dealing with real people in real time."

The sense of containment portrayed by the region's natural environment - as the South Bay basin is bounded by the Santa Cruz Mountains and the Diablo Range - belies the volatility of its workforce dynamic. The character of the Innovation Corridor revolves around rapid technological change. In a perpetual cycle of creative destruction, new opportunities emerge as innovation reigns - rendering transitory technology obsolete and whole segments of a trained workforce jobless. In 2000, at the peak of the state's boom and bust economy, one million Californians worked in high-wage, high-tech positions. By 2003, as many as half of those jobs remained with some be filled by other workers. Approximately half of the workforce shifted to non-tech industry including business services, health care and education, and more than twenty percent of former high-tech workers have since landed in lower paying jobs.

Recognizing the uncommon character of the region, NOVA seeks to understand customer requirements and industry idiosyncrasies within their environment. Like an anthropologist in the field, NOVA infiltrates the economic culture of the region to discover what's important to the people living and working in Silicon Valley, and why.

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