Portland IQ creates “center of gravity” for Portland’s innovation ecosystem

Expansive collaborative effort launches with more than 20 organizations from private and public sectors

Image courtesy OHSU

Today, Portland IQ (Portland Innovation Quadrant), a nonprofit organization designed to champion and connect the varied groups working in the innovation ecosystem in Portland, Oregon, formally launched at TechfestNW, the region’s premier technology and innovation conference. The new public-private partnership — created to serve as both a platform and a physical hub — seeks to efficiently convene corporations, startups, educational institutions, government bodies, supporting organizations, and the surrounding community with the goal of facilitating more strategic, collaborative, organized, and intentional approaches to building and promoting a robust, diverse, and inclusive innovation economy for the region.

The physical geography of the Portland IQ bridges both the east and west sides of the Willamette River, spanning from areas surrounding the Burnside Bridge to the those near the Ross Island Bridge. With several significant parcels of land under development, including Zidell Yards, the ODOT Blocks, and the OMSI campus expansion, the group seeks to attract investments, tenants, and talent that accelerate and grow Portland’s dynamic innovation economy.

“As industry boundaries continue to blur, proximity to talent, ideas, and facilities matter more and more,” said Erin Flynn, Chair, Portland IQ. “The IQ is home to remarkable innovation assets including our region’s anchor educational institutions, business incubators, startups, maker spaces, and coworking offices. The IQ will better connect and amplify these assets by creating a central hub for Oregon’s innovation economy.

Portland IQ collaborators and projects

“We’ve worked to engage with a variety of partners interested in growing and attracting talent, providing business support, and securing the ongoing investment required to fuel continued innovation. All of us in the Portland IQ are excited to embrace this unique opportunity to serve as the center of gravity for our region’s entire innovation economy. And we look forward to engaging with new partners as this effort builds.”

Emanating from a seminal collaboration among educational institutions including Oregon Health Sciences University (OHSU), Portland State University (PSU), Portland Community College (PCC), and the Oregon Museum of Science and Industry (OMSI), the Portland IQ has continued to attract interest and participation from a wide group of stakeholders, including:

Examples of collaborations

The efforts around the Portland IQ are already resulting in tangible benefits to the city’s innovation ecosystem. Some early examples of these collaborations include:

  • Collaborative Life Sciences Building & Skourtes Tower: A collaboration that brings together OHSU, Oregon State University, and PSU in one location to benefit all of Oregon’s life sciences efforts.
  • Eastside Innovation Hub: A $12 million investment by Summit Development Group in collaboration with private industry to provide wet-lab and office space for bioscience startups.
  • Jasmine Block: A new collaborative building designed to house PSU-OHSU School of Public Health, City of Portland Bureau of Planning and Sustainability, PCC Dental Programs, and the PSU Graduate School of Education.
  • PIE Shop: A collaboration among Autodesk, PIE, and Uncorked Studios to provide a modern manufacturing facility for the next generation of Internet of Things and connected-device companies.

About Portland IQ

The Portland IQ (Portland Innovation Quadrant) serves as the center of gravity for the flourishing Portland innovation ecosystem, furthering a mission to grow, attract, and retain the talent, companies, and investment that propels Portland to global prominence in the cross-collaboration of health, science, technology, and product design.

Anchored by a variety of public and private entities, the Portland IQ is fueled by a talented workforce, cultivated locally through a coordinated career pathway system delivered by anchor institutions (OMSI, PCC, PSU, OHSU) in partnership with regional K-12 school districts (Portland Public Schools) and other educational partners.

The Portland IQ is currently operating as a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization under the auspices of the TAO Foundation, the non-profit arm of the Technology Association of Oregon.

To take part in the Portland IQ, contact us. For more information, visit http://portlandiq.org/ or follow @portlandiq on Twitter and Instagram.