Portland named an ‘unexpected’ city for high-tech innovation

Is Portland, Maine, an “unexpected” city for high-tech innovation?

Another list.

While they’re not all compiled with the most rigorous of methodologies, it’s still nice to point out whenever Maine and/or its communities show up on one of these national lists.

This time it’s Portland landing on Techie.com’s list of the “Ten Most Unexpected Cities for High-Tech Innovation.”

There’s the typical mention of “iconic lighthouses,” but the blurb’s author, Nick Epson, eventually says Portland is “working hard to create a new image for the state of Maine as a place known for high-tech innovation.”

I agree, but the website is sparse on the methodology they used to compile the list. They only offer: “We asked innovators, entrepreneurs, and city leaders this question: ‘What are the most unexpected cities that are leading the high-tech revolution?'” There was no email address or phone number provided for Nick Epson or the website’s editor that I could use to ask for more details (a tech site, really?).

Getting special shout-outs in Epson’s blurb are the Maine Center for Entrepreneurial Development’s Top Gun program, where Don Gooding helps train entrepreneurs to take their business ideas to the next level, and Casco Bay Technology Hub, a space on Danforth Street where a collection of businesses are working to build a technology hub in Portland.

Portland joins cities such as Chattanooga, Tenn.; Detroit, Mich.; Las Vegas, Nev.; and  Cincinatti, Ohio, on the list. Also making an appearance is South Bend, Ind., which also happens to be where Techie.com is headquartered…

While it’s fun to look at these lists — and I’m certainly glad Portland was selected for inclusion, as it at least means Portland is on the map when these conversations come up — I don’t put much stock in a list where the author doesn’t explain its methodology, the site provides no contact info for any of the writers or editors, and the site’s hometown makes the list…



Whit Richardson

About Whit Richardson

Whit Richardson is Business Editor at the Bangor Daily News. He blogs about Maine business, entrepreneurs and the economy.