Understand the state of local tech economies

The Center on Rural Innovation is committed to closing the opportunity gap in rural communities. To do so, we focus on the digital economy because it’s the fastest growing sector of the economy and is highly linked to innovation and economic development; the stronger a region’s digital economy ecosystem, the more sustainable its economic future.

Realizing this future requires helping rural leaders understand the state of local technology talent, among other factors, and equipping them with the data and information they need to build digital economy ecosystems.

The Tech Talent Tracker was created to help them do just that. This tool aggregates critical data points at the county level — data points that are foundational to understanding a community’s technology opportunities and potential. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Population trends
  • Industry breakdown, as well as emerging industries
  • Employment in digital jobs
  • Computer science graduates
  • Local tech jobs
  • Broadband usage

The tool provides a way to look at a county in isolation or, alternatively, to select peer counties for comparison purposes. It is specifically designed to advance the work of a multitude of users, from community development leaders to elected officials, Chamber of Commerce Directors to local business owners. The reports the tool generates can help rural leaders allocate resources, write more effective grants, identify local workforce gaps and capabilities, and tell their communities’ stories.

Use this tool to:

  • Compare the relative strength of different industries across select counties
  • Determine the size and depth of tech talent in your community
  • Understand the talent required to hire for local technology opportunities

About our work

The Center on Rural Innovation builds data-driven maps, tools, and resources that highlight rural America’s opportunities and challenges. To learn more about our work, visit our data and mapping page.

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