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Boston, Greater Philadelphia and Greater San Francisco Top Milken Institute's Ranking of Life Sciences Clusters in U.S.

5/19/2009 11:01:04 AM

ATLANTA, GA--(Marketwire - May 19, 2009) -

Jobs and economic growth are scarce these days, but Boston, Greater Philadelphia and Greater San Francisco continue to be the most successful regions at sustaining value in the life sciences -- an industry prepared to weather the economic downturn and poised to benefit from federal policy and stimulus initiatives and future overall recovery, according to a new report from the Milken Institute.

"The Greater Philadelphia Life Sciences Cluster 2009: An Economic and Comparative Assessment," released today at BIO International Convention, updates the Institute's 2005 study of the U.S. top life sciences clusters. Boston remains on top, Greater Philadelphia moves up to second from third, and San Francisco drops one spot to third.

"We've been saying for years that regions that cultivate their life sciences assets -- including universities, hospitals, tech spin-offs and start-ups -- are best prepared to succeed in a changing economy," said Ross DeVol, director of Regional Economics at the Milken Institute. "These top performers are well suited to ride out the recession and thrive in the recovery."

The study, sponsored BioAdvance, PhRMA, PricewaterhouseCoopers, Select Greater Philadelphia, BioNJ, Delaware BioScience Association, Greater Philadelphia Life Sciences Congress and Pennsylvania Bio. The purpose of the study was to define Greater Philadelphia's opportunities and challenges in life sciences by measuring the region's progress since the 2005 study, and to serve as a guide for strategic planning for further development of the sector.

The report compares Greater Philadelphia to 10 other metropolitan areas considered to be the leading life sciences clusters in the U.S. and ranks them based on employment, research and development capacity, output, work force, investment and dozens of other measures.

Milken Institute Composite Index Rankings: The Greater Philadelphia Life Sciences Cluster 2009: An Economic and Comparative Assessment 2009 2005 2009 Composite 2005 Composite Ranking Region Score Ranking Score ------- ------ --------- ------- --------- 1 Boston 100 1 100 2 Greater Philadelphia 97.7 3 97.1 3 Greater San Francisco 92.1 2 98.4 4 Greater New York 92 4 94.6 5 Greater Raleigh-Durham 88.2 5 91.1 6 Greater Los Angeles 86.8 7 87 7 Chicago 80.1 9 75.9 8 San Diego 78.7 6 90.7 9 Minneapolis 78.2 8 77.9 10 Washington, D.C. 74.8 N/A N/A 11 Seattle 69.2 10 70.9

Among the study's findings:

-- After accounting for economic ripple effects, the life sciences sector in Greater Philadelphia was responsible for generating 380,800 jobs, $20.2 billion in earnings and $39.7 billion in output in 2007. Fifteen percent of all economic activity and one out of every six jobs in the region can be traced back to life sciences. -- Boston continues to have a lead in R&D capacity among the ranked regions and also leads in success rate of National Science Foundation funding for submitted proposals at 27 percent. -- Greater Raleigh-Durham emerged as the top performer for indexed relative employment growth between 2002 and 2007, 14 percent above the national average. -- Greater Los Angeles leads in life sciences small-business vitality in terms of number, share and growth of firms, with the other California regions of Greater San Francisco and San Diego close behind. -- Greater San Francisco continues to be strong in life sciences, particularly in the availability of risk capital and in relative growth, but slipped in the Overall Composite Index due to Greater Philadelphia's advances in biotechnology R&D and other measures.

The report and data tables for the major criteria are available at

About the Milken Institute: The Milken Institute is a nonprofit, independent economic think tank whose mission is to improve the lives and economic conditions of diverse populations around the world by helping business and public policy leaders identify and implement innovative ideas for creating broad-based prosperity. It is based in Santa Monica, Calif. (

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