Thriving on Innovation

Reigning in manufacturing, agriculture, transportation and overall innovation is Pure Michigan.

For the past two years, I’ve had the benefit of project managing stories for Michigan Economic Development Corp. that showcase the innovative, collaborative work being done throughout the state. In doing so, I worked with two marketing companies and several freelance writers.

Michigan has the highest ratio of research spending to venture capital investment in the nation. For every $1 invested in VC in the state, $149 is invested in research.

Home to 66 of the top 100 North American auto suppliers, 16 OEMS and the largest deployment of vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) and vehicle-to-vehicle communication (V2V) technology in the country,  Michigan is at the epicenter of mobility.

The state leads the nation in producing 20 different commodities, including blueberries (30 million varieties and 3 million metric tons), cucumbers (for pickling), squash and tart cherries, and it ranks among the country’s biggest producers of apples (16 varieties and 1.8 billion pounds) and dairy products (1.2 billion gallons of milk).

In the process, I learned more than I could have imagine about the powerhouse organizations and amazing talent in the region.

Nearly 140,000 people work in Michigan’s IT and cybersecurity industry. And the state has multiple cyber ranges, where programmers can test and validate cybersecurity threats and responses without damaging their own systems, some of which are open to the private sector.

The top three global furniture leaders — Grand Rapids-based Steelcase Inc., Zeeland-based Herman Miller Inc. and Holland-based Haworth Inc. — are in West Michigan, and they shaping the future of furniture design by integrating materials science, virtual reality, and other advanced technologies into innovative products and solutions.

Learn more about why businesses are moving to and remaining in Michigan.

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