Four Keys to a Healthy Innovation Cluster in Westchester

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At our recent Virtual Roundtable: Building the Westchester Biotech Cluster, Steve Wray, VP and Director, Regional Economics and Labor at Econsult Solutions, shared four keys to developing a healthy innovation cluster. Click for Recording

“Westchester County can view itself as being at the center of the largest biotech/biopharma cluster in the world, which is the Northeast United States. That’s an incredible geographic opportunity.”
— Steve Wray, VP and Director, Regional Economics and Labor Econsult Solutions

The Four Keys:

  • Research Assets: The region must have a strong research presence alongside access to ample talent.

  • Innovation Culture: A strong start-up culture requires significant entrepreneurial support resources and investment.

  • Place: Successful clusters are located in amenity-rich environments with established lab space and transportation infrastructures.

  • Collaboration: An overall attitude of positive engagement is active across organizations, institutions, and government.

Wray emphasizes the essential requirement for local and regional government support that prioritizes the growth of innovative capabilities. His insights on the meaningful growth of a life science ecosystem flow from work in Philadelphia and the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, drawing on experiences from Boston, Baltimore, and Silicon Valley.

The discussion was joined by Philippe Salphati, President & CEO of AYA Consulting in France, who is shepherding Westchester Biotech Project Europe.

“We’re not starting from scratch in Westchester. With profound life science resources already growing here, now is the time to look to diverse clusters for lessons learned.”
— Joanne Gere, Executive Director, Westchester Biotech Project

Cluster building is a multi-tiered, multi-year initiative, requiring the combined resources and collaborative efforts of numerous individuals and organizations. However, the resulting supportive life science infrastructure lays an enduring foundation for the future. In alignment with our mission, we will continue to look to other clusters for lessons learned during times of directed growth.

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About Steve Wray:
Mr. Wray leads collaborative teams focused on regional economic competitiveness and innovation policy. He assists public, private, and non-profit sectors with talent development, infrastructure, and governance issues. As an internationally recognized cluster development expert and speaker, he translates complicated issues and concepts to diverse audiences.