Best Practices

Four Indicators to Assess Local Ecosystem Vibrancy

Published Mar 18, 2015 by Sarah Mote

When you build entrepreneurial ecosystems, it's important to be accountable to your goal and your entrepreneurs. That's why we love this new report from the Kauffman Foundation, "Four Indicators to Assess Local Ecosystem Vibrancy."

From our own Biz-Trakker to Resource Navigator, we at U.S.SourceLink are always in favor of measuring ecosystem vibrancy. The measures outlined in this report, in addition to the kinds of things we look for in our U.S.SourceLink communities, are a step in the right direction. We've always been a big fan of connectivity, having spent the last 12 years connecting resources to entrepreneurs and to each other.

"With the rise of entrepreneurial ecosystems – elements within a community that support firm formation and growth – how can local leaders measure success? That's the subject of a report released today by the Ewing Marion Kauffman Foundation. 

"Most communities fall short in assessing the performance of their entrepreneurial ecosystems, according to the paper, 'Measuring an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem.'

"Community leaders tend either to focus on a limited number of input metrics rather than quantifying outcomes, or to take a 'kitchen-sink approach.'

"The latter considers all aspects of an entrepreneurial ecosystem equally important and therefore attempts to track every result, failing to provide adequate focus for community leaders.

"Assessments of entrepreneurial vibrancy may need to vary by city or by region, based on each area's priorities.

"As a starting point, however, the paper's authors propose four indicators that reflect an entrepreneurial ecosystem's vitality and evolution: density, fluidity, connectivity and diversity."

Yes, yes, yes and yes. Click here to read the whole article.

What indicators would you add to the mix?