September 10, 2009

Chamber Study Highlights Connecticut’s Innovative Contributions

WASHINGTON, DC-The U.S. Chamber of Commerce’s Global Intellectual Property Center (GIPC) today released a report highlighting Connecticut’s contributions to America’s innovation economy. This study is part of GIPC’s State Fact Sheets, which provide a look at the roles innovation and creativity play in each state. The report highlights local companies and facts demonstrating how innovation and creativity-which are safeguarded by strong IP rights-serve as a driving force behind economic recovery and future growth.

“Connecticut is a leader in America’s innovative economy,” said Dr. Mark Esper, executive vice president of the Chamber’s GIPC. According to GIPC’s study, Connecticut’s film industry generated $2.5 billion in gross state product and provided approximately 8,000 direct and 18,000 indirect jobs in 2005 alone. “Connecticut has fostered an environment conducive to innovation and creativity, and the state’s economy has benefitted as a result. The Connecticut economy depends on this spirit of innovation and entrepreneurism,” added Esper.

Esper noted examples of innovation and creativity in Connecticut. The number of businesses in Connecticut involved with copyrighted works grew to more than 9,500 in 2008 – an increase of 6.8% from the previous year. General Electric (GE), based in Fairfeld, CT, is a global infrastructure, finance and media corporation with 323,000 employees worldwide and presence in 160 countries. In 2008 alone, GE accrued $182 billion in revenues. Another notable example of a Connecticut-based diversified company is Xerox Corporation, a $17.6 billion leading enterprise in technology and services.

“Indeed Connecticuters are proven innovators,” said Esper. “Connecticut’s Mary Dixon Kies was the first woman to earn a patent for her invention of the process for weaving straw, which greatly expanded the apparel industry. Hartford, Connecticut born Noah Webster is widely recognized as the ‘Father of American Scholarship and Education’ with his development of the Merriam-Webster dictionary. America has a unique story to tell, and Connecticut plays a large role in this story.”

The Connecticut State Fact Sheet is intended to be a resource for legislators, policymakers, and the public to identify successful companies, inventors, creative artists, and innovators to better understand the role they play in our economy and society. As part of an easy-to-use, interactive map, the State Fact Sheet project can be accessed online at, as well as in a printable format.

The Chamber’s Global Intellectual Property Center is working around the world to champion intellectual property (IP) as vital to creating jobs, saving lives, advancing global economic growth, and generating breakthrough solutions to global challenges.

The U.S. Chamber is the world’s largest business federation representing more than 3 million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region.

For more information, contact Trinh Nguyen at (202) 463-5379.

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