Massachusetts now ranks sixth in the nation in total life sciences employment but No. 1 in industry jobs per capita, in part due to support from the state, according to Northeastern University’s Dukakis Center for Urban and Regional Policy.
By 2012, the most recent year for which statistics are available, the state had 113,678 jobs in the industry, ranking it behind California, New York, Texas, Pennsylvania and New Jersey. But controlling for population size, Massachusetts, with its smaller population, ranked first in per capita employment, with 17,363 life sciences jobs for every 1 million people — 1.8 times as many as California and 2.3 times as many as New York, said Alan Clayton-Matthews, director of quantitative methods at Northeastern’s School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs.
“As of 2014, all 10 of the top 10 drug companies in the world have set up shop in Massachusetts,” said Barry Bluestone, director of the Dukakis Center. “Why? Because they wanted a front-row seat to acquire small life science firms and their discoveries.”
Bluestone cited the accelerator loans, research and development funds, and other support those firms have received from the Massachusetts Life Sciences Center, the agency charged with implementing the state’s $1 billion Life Sciences Initiative.