Top Four California Life Science Job Regions
Published: Feb 15, 2016
February 11, 2016
By Angela Rose for BioSpace.com
If you’re a life science professional in search of your next job, you may want to begin in California. With 2,848 life science organizations ranging from entrepreneurial startups to global operations, the state is a veritable land of opportunity for biologists, chemists, engineers, research associates, scientists and others. An economic engine credited with continually powering area growth, the California life science sector directly employs 281,000 individuals and generates $130 billion in revenue each year.
But its impact is far greater. Many of the companies within it have created—and continue to create—medications, medical devices, research tools and biorenewables that significantly impact human health. Life science professionals in California are actively engaged in research and manufacturing that saves lives with tools and drugs for diagnosing and treating heart disease, cancer and many other diseases.
“California’s life sciences ecosystem is driving the economy and delivering life-changing medicines and technologies that benefit health and well-being far beyond our state’s borders,” Sara Radcliffe, president and chief executive officer of the California Life Sciences Association (CLSA), recently stated in a press release. “The birthplace of biotechnology and a leader in exciting new fields such as digital health, genomics and precision medicine, it’s no coincidence that California is excelling in life sciences job creation, research funding, venture capital investment and so many other measures.”
The CLSA, in cooperation with PwC, recently released their annual report detailing the industry’s growth and current statistics. To help with your job search, here are a few facts we’ve deemed of greatest interest to job seekers like you. Use them to narrow in on your areas of greatest opportunity or to impress hiring managers with your knowledge of the industry. You can find additional facts and figures when you download the CLSA’s report here.
TOP CALIFORNIA LIFE SCIENCE CLUSTERS
While you can find life science companies located across the state, some areas—or clusters—are home to more potential employers. Consider starting your job search in one of the top four: the Bay Area, Los Angeles County, Orange County or San Diego County. See chart here.
Total Life Sciences Employment by Cluster in California, 2014
California Life Sciences Wages by Sector, 2014
TOP CALIFORNIA LIFE SCIENCE EMPLOYMENT SECTORS
By far, companies specializing in medical devices, instruments and diagnostics employ the greatest number of life science professionals in California. In fact, 74,553 professionals worked for organizations in this sector segment in 2014—an employment increase of 0.2 percent over two years. However, testing labs and research and development companies also offer a large number of opportunities. Employment in this sector section increased 6.7 percent—to 67,619 professionals—from 2012 to 2014.
Top Life Sciences Employment in California, 2012-2014
Biopharmaceutical companies and academic research are also big employers. While academic research employs fewer life scientists than all but biorenewables, it’s still an influential player. California is home to some of the most prestigious universities and independent research institutes in the nation—attracting brilliant minds from around the globe. According to the CLSA’s data, this “intellectual firepower” attracted 7,328 grants from the National Institutes of Health (NIH) in 2014—for a total of $3.3 billion.
TOP CALIFORNIA DRUG DEVELOPMENT AREAS
California life science companies had 1,235 new medications in the product development pipeline in 2015. While cancer-related therapies accounted for 366, drugs for the treatment of infectious disease (151), the central nervous system (109), hormonal systems and nephrology (93) and the immune system (77) also filled the pipeline.
California Products by Therapeutic Area, IND through Phase III (Biopharm Insight, Sept. 30, 2015)
“Our latest report paints a vivid picture of California’s life sciences companies thriving through collaboration, innovation, investment and access to resources in academia and the workforce,” Peter Claude, partner and pharmaceutical and life sciences advisory for PwC, said in a press release. “Our collective research has shown that California’s life sciences innovation ecosystem is alive and well; that companies and innovators here are leading in nearly every measureable facet of growth and creating a new era in healthcare marked by the convergence of technologies, information sharing, and focused investment.”
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