Where do $1 billion companies grow?
And what do regions do to foster them?
While the Silicon Valley model of innovation represents one enviable model for success, it is not widely imitable. Nor, happily is it essential.
Model of success
Innovation is a critical driver of economic growth and prosperity and not surprisingly, countries around the world are expending considerable resources to help their companies innovate. Somewhat ironically, their efforts to foster innovation look strikingly similar with strategies mostly consisting of investing in R&D, particularly in the sciences and at universities, building technology transfer capabilities and establishing large pools of risk, capital to accelerate the growth of dynamic startup enterprises in "high tech" fields like life sciences, information and communication technology, clean energy, etc. In short, most would seem to be trying to emulate Silicon Valley's model of success.
Yet, given the Valley's near unique set of assets (i.e., extremely high levels of education, world class universities, abundant venture capital and a culture that celebrates risk and failure), one must wonder how replicable is this model?