To map KC “tech universe,” professor asks companies to complete survey
Heike Mayer created a solar system-like diagram of Seattle's entrepreneurial ecosystem (above) and is now creating one for Kansas City.
The Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation and a professor from the University of Bern (Switzerland) are asking Kansas City startups to complete a survey that will help show how the city's tech industry is connected.
The survey, which closes in late January, is a continuation of work that Heike Mayer, a professor of economic geography, began in Kansas City in 2006. That year, Mayer released a paper on what is needed to create a high-tech and life science economy in Kansas City. Three years later, she focused on Kansas City again, this time with a paper that looked at how three cities – Kansas City, Portland and Boise – became centers of a high-technology industry without the presence of a major university.
Mayer's next step is to create a solar system-like diagram displaying the relationships between participants in Kansas City's high-tech and life sciences industries, such as an established tech company (Sprint) and a venture capital firm (OpenAir Equity Partners).
"They look great in other cities," said Cameron Cushman, a Kauffman Foundation manager in entrepreneurship, at the Nov. 14 event. "I think they've been very instrumental in providing a picture and a map for other cities to pursue courses in how to make their entrepreneurial ecosystem more robust."
Leaders of information technology, telecommunications, life sciences and other high-tech firms in Kansas City are invited to take the survey at kauffman.org/kctechsurvey.
Mayer's Nov. 14 presentation, which also examines the characteristics of an entrepreneurial ecosystem, is below.