Innovation Index shows mixed results for first quarter 2011 in UM-Dearborn study

August 18, 2011

DEARBORN / August 22, 2011---The University of Michigan-Dearborn’s Center for Innovation ResearchiLabs – today released its Innovation Index for the first quarter 2011. The Index, which quarterly measures economic innovation activity in the state of Michigan, fell from 94.4 to 90.9.

“The drop is largely due to the Small Business Jobs Act of 2010, which provided a short term boost in the number of small business loans at the end of the previous quarter,” according to Lee Redding, associate professor of business economics and director of the Innovation Index at the College of Business. “Without this indicator the Index would have been slightly up for the quarter.”

The Innovation Index tracks economic innovation in Michigan based on calculations of employment of “innovation workers,” trends in venture capital, trademark applications, incorporation activity, small business loans and gross job creation. Four of the six indicators considered for the Index are higher than they were a year ago.

Positive indicators in the first quarter 2011 Innovation Index were incorporations, which showed a strong increase and trademark applications, which now stand at the highest level since 2006. Negative indicators included innovation workers, as the percentage of workers employed in science and engineering was down slightly; venture capital funding in Michigan, which continued its decline; Small Business Administration loans, which dropped in the first quarter due largely to a temporary provision passed by Congress that encouraged SBA loans in late 2010 and gross job creation which sell slightly below gross job losses for the quarter.

The next University of Michigan-Dearborn Innovation Index report, due in late November, will contain a detailed report of second quarter activity with a preliminary indication for the third quarter of 2011. “Going forward, after two quarters of large point moves, it is likely the Index will be less volatile in the next report,” said Redding. Redding collaborates on the project with economist Anne-Louise Statt.

Founded in 1959 with a gift of just over 200 acres of land and $6.5 million from the Ford Motor Company, University of Michigan-Dearborn is a metropolitan university serving southeastern Michigan, committed to excellence rooted in strong academics, innovative research and programming and civic engagement. The University has nearly 8,900 students pursuing more than 90 bachelor's, master’s, doctoral and professional degrees in liberal arts and sciences, engineering, business and education.  A top-ranked university with a faculty devoted to teaching, and students committed to achievement, UM-Dearborn has been shaped by its history of partnering with local leaders and communities, and is committed to finding solutions for the challenges that face the region.

Beth Marmarelli
313-593-5542 /