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Smart, Hard-Working and Happy

A Talented Workforce Powers Colorado’s Bioscience Industry

Bright, passionate people make Colorado the ideal place for bioscience investment. Our state attracts leading talent from around the globe and boasts a dedicated, skilled workforce.


Here are three reasons why our state’s people power attracts companies and investors from all over the world and makes bioscience products our state’s number one export.

1) We’re Smart

The Boulder MSA ranked No. 1 in the “2016 Bloomberg Brain Concentration Index.” The company ranked metro areas based on their per capita concentration of residents working in science, technology, and engineering occupations or who have science and engineering college degrees or post-graduate degrees. Boulder’s concentration of high-tech industries and numerous federal laboratories contributed to its high rank. San Jose, Calif. ranked second, followed by Ann Arbor, Mich.

  • Colorado ranked seventh in life and physical scientists as a percentage of all occupations in 2012.
  • Of Colorado’s adult population, more than 43 percent are college graduates
  • The state also ranks fifth in the U.S. for the number of scientists and engineers (as a share of all occupations)

2) We Work Hard

Denver ranks as the 11th hardest-working city in the U.S., according to a recent WalletHub report. Additionally, the Consumer Technology Association named Colorado an “Innovation Champion” by the Consumer Technology Association in an assessment of all 50 states’ innovation and sustainability. States are evaluated on 10 indicators, including undergraduates earning STEM degrees and laws governing emerging new technologies. The composite score of each grade determines a state’s overall distinction, Innovation Champion (the highest ranking), Innovation Leader, Innovation Adopter, or Modest Innovator.

  • Bioscience products are Colorado’s leading export, accounting for 17% of all exports in 2013 totaling $2.2 billion.
  • State inventors have been issued 2,931 patents in bioscience related technologies since 2012.

3) We’re Happy

U.S. News & World Report ranked Denver No. 2 on its latest annual list of the best places to live in the U.S. The same list names Colorado Springs No. 11. To compile the list, U.S. News & World Report selected the nation’s 100 largest metro areas by population and ranked them based on value of living, quality of life, job market health, desire to live there, and net migration. Additionally, Livability named seven Colorado cities to its 2016 “Top 100 Best Places to Live” list. Rankings include:

  • Boulder: #5
  • Fort Collins: #13
  • Longmont: #23
  • Littleton: #24
  • Lakewood: #26
  • Lafayette: #44

Colorado also ranked No. 5 on the list of the happiest, healthiest states, according to a report from Gallup-Healthways. The rankings were based on interviews of more than 177,000 adults in 50 states. The well-being scores were based on the participants’ answers to questions that pertained to different aspects of well-being such as social relationships, sense of purpose, financial lives, physical health, and community involvement.

Our smart, hard-working and happy workforce supports a thriving bioscience sector in our state. An estimated 725 bioscience companies call Colorado home, employing 30,000 people in the sector, including agricultural, biotechnology, diagnostic, digital health, medical device, and pharmaceutical companies. The state’s bioscience industry creates more than 159,00 direct and indirect jobs.

Download the PDF to learn more about Colorado’s workforce and business environment.

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