The Global Cities Initiative
released a report on Denver in a series covering "The 10 Traits of Globally Fluent Metro Areas" at a June 26 event, "Going Global: Boosting Metro Denver's Economic Future."
This hi-tech mix creates spillovers that complement Colorado’s broader space and aerospace economy, the second largest in the country and home to four military commands, eight major space contractors, and more than 400 aerospace companies and suppliers. The region is second among the 50 largest metro areas for total private aerospace workers with19,600 people employed in the sector. Of that growing cluster, Denver has developed a particular niche in the satellite-based services segment, housing firms such as DISH Network and sister company EchoStar Corporation.
Denver and the surrounding Northern Colorado region concentrate dozens of federal research institutions, research universities, and private research and development laboratories. These assets have attracted and developed a highly educated workforce needed to fuel the region’s innovation economy: 38 percent of residents have completed a bachelor’s degree or higher, compared to a national average of only 29percent. The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office’s recent decision to open a satellite office in Denver reflects the region’s important role in the national innovation ecosystem.
Beyond the benefits of its clusters and specialties, the Denver metro area has also capitalized on its status as the largest city in the Mountain West region. As the largest metropolitan area within almost 600 miles, Denver is a natural center for business and professional services for companies throughout the region. This industry not only provides the plurality of employment to the region (239,000 jobs) but also is the largest driver of job growth, with payrolls in the sector growing at 3.8 percent annually.
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