CHARLOTTE – North Carolina tries to be a good place to start up businesses, particularly science and technology businesses. I am frequently talking to folks who are trying to help innovative startups. We have small business centers at the community colleges, and small business and technology development centers at the state universities. Recently, I wrote about the Manufacturing Solutions Center in Conover and First Flight Venture Center in Research Triangle Park.

The state’s Military Business Center is one of the most active players, and its Defense Technology Transition Office (DEFTECH) has a video meeting every Friday well-attended by startups trying to navigate the military acquisition bureaucracy.

Recently, the Defense Alliance of North Carolina had a session entitled “The North Carolina Innovation Ecosystem” that I attended. One of the presentations was by John Hardin, executive director of the North Carolina Board of Science, Technology & Innovation, an agency of the state’s Commerce Department. He talked about how we stand in comparison to other states, and the urban-rural economic divide in our own state. That is one of the jobs of the board and its staff, to assess how we’re doing and make recommendations.

John Hardin

Gov. Terry Sanford pushed for the board’s creation in 1963 because he said North Carolina was falling behind: “We missed the Industrial Revolution, and our people have paid for it. We don’t want to miss out on the new revolution in science and technology.”

Read the rest of Dan Barkin’s story at Business North Carolina.

(C) Business North Carolina