Silicon Alley Kicks Silicon Valley’s Patootie–Report


New York has two-and-a-half times as many tech workers as Silicon Valley, says a new report commissioned by the Industrial and Technology Assistance Corporation.  It even has twice as many as Boston! 

Of course, to arrive at that conclusion, you have to count not only folks who work at Google, IBM, etc., but tech workers embedded in drug companies, Wall Street firms, Tiffany & Co., etc.–folks at 180 corporations in southern NY and northern New Jersey.  Do all that, says Sara Garretson, president of the ITAC, and you get 620,000 tech workers.

Although counting this way is useful and defensible, it’s no surprise that about half of the New York Times‘s article on the study is devoted to a Silicon Valley executive guffawing that the comparison is preposterous.  The Times is also quick to note the relative amounts of venture capital invested in the regions: $4.9 billion in Silicon Valley in the first half of the year, versus $800 million here. 

At SAI, we’re not claiming that New York has more “tech workers” than the Valley–and we frankly don’t care.  New York sits at the centre of the world’s media, information, finance, and advertising industries.  We have everything here–from a vibrant start-up scene to fast-growing mid-size corporations to global behemoths.  Are we bigger than the Valley?  Who cares?  We’re big, and we’re back.