Dear Mayor-Elect de Blasio …
When you take office on January 1, the technology sector in New York will be larger and more vibrant than ever. This is good news, since technology-based innovation has become not only America’s new engine of prosperity and job creation, but inarguably New York City’s as well. Each new high-skilled tech job leads to five additional new jobs in the local economy.
As Executive Director of the New York Technology Council (NYTECH), I can assure you that tech is not only an innovative sector in its own right, but also a leading force behind innovation in many other sectors of the New York economy, including finance, advertising, media, publishing, retail, entertainment, fashion, transportation, health care and education.
As mayor, one of your priorities must be helping to grow the tech sector, aiming to make NYC the best environment in the world for technology businesses of all ages and sizes.
Here are 10 ways you can help improve the environment for tech and tech businesses in NYC:
- Actively promote NYC as the leading center for tech-based innovation
- Further encourage entrepreneurship so that NYC becomes even more of a magnet for the most creative talent in the world
- Support the NYC Tech Campus projects and encourage closer ties between business and academia
- Develop and support programs to increase the diversity of the tech workforce in NYC
- Improve and promote STEM education at all levels
- Work with industry to improve broadband wireline and wireless connectively citywide
- Improve public transportation and help keep NYC affordable for its workforce
- Improve public education so highly-skilled workers won’t leave for the suburbs as they start families
- Reduce bureaucracy and red tape for businesses of all sizes
- Advocate on behalf of issues that matter to the tech community, such as comprehensive immigration reform
Beyond helping the technology sector prosper, you could and should use technology and the tech community to help reduce inequality among New York City’s people. More specifically, tech can reduce the digital divide, the economic divide and the divide between citizens and their government.
The members of NYTECH, who range from individuals to startups to some of the largest corporations in the United States, stand ready to help you ensure that New York City is the greatest and most tech-savvy city in the world.
Erik K. Grimmelmann is the executive director of the New York Technology Council (NYTECH), which is a membership-driven, nonprofit organization focused on developing and promoting the technology industry in New York City.