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Why Pasadena

See why Pasadena is the hub of innovation in the San Gabriel Valley.

The great innovation hubs of the world all have two things in common: they begin with a great set of raw materials, and they attract entrepreneurs and thinkers who in turn bring the city and culture to life. Here are just some of the things that make Pasadena a great place to innovate. Read on for more Pasadena facts, or visit FutureYourselfHere to learn more.

An Innovation Hub

A Center of World-Class Talent

Pasadena is home to some of the nation's leading science, research, and design institutions. Greater Pasadena leads the nation’s innovation hub cities in high school graduation rates, and 70% of the region’s population has a bachelor's degree or higher – over double the national average. In fact, 38 Nobel Laureates have ties to Pasadena, among the highest concentrations in the world!

Caltech was named the "World’s Top University" according to Times Higher Education global ranking. ArtCenter College of Design was named the nation’s top programs in Product Design and Industrial Design by Design Intelligence, and has produced the world’s leading automotive designers for the last 40 years.

"Community Bank was founded by entrepreneurs, so the mission of Innovate Pasadena resonates with us."

Stefan Lehner, Senior Vice President, Community Bank
Home of Transformative Technologies

Pasadena is home to many inventions that make our daily lives easier and drive businesses nationwide. The Mars Rover, DNA Sequencer, CMOS Semiconductor and the Richter scale are all tied to Pasadena, and Caltech has equity in more than 80 companies that rely on technology developed in Pasadena.

Pasadena's tech incubators have turned out hundreds of companies, and the original start-up incubator, Idealab, has created more than 125 companies. Picasa, Citysearch, Overture, Evolution Robotics, and all started in Pasadena.

Focused on Research & Development

Pasadena sits in the heart of a region that files the most patents in the U.S. outside of Silicon Valley. Maybe this is why Pasadena attracts $1.9 billion in federal R&D funds annually, and $25 billion since 2001. That’s over $14,000 per capita, more than any other innovation hub in the U.S. Overall, Southern California attracts over $2 billion in venture capital annually – not too shabby!

With all the new technologies and discoveries in our city, it's no wonder that nearly 1 in 6 jobs in Pasadena are in professional or creative fields, beating out Seattle, San Jose, Austin, and Portland.

The Perfect Mix of Arts and Culture

Pasadena has an arts and culture scene that offers residents a great quality of life, with access to more arts establishments per capita than anywhere else in the nation. Among cultural spots of note are the Norton Simon Museum, which houses one of the most remarkable private art collections ever assembled; the Huntington Library, which is rated as one of the world’s greatest cultural, research, and educational centers; the Pasadena Museum of California Art, which showcases the breadth of California art, architecture and design, and the Asia Pacific Museum, one of the few U.S. institutions dedicated to the arts and culture of Asia and the Pacific Islands. Pasadena is also home to the Pasadena Playhouse, the official state theater of California.

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