What are the forces moving the Minnesota economy? Adam Belz tries to identify the trends and show the connections between Minnesota and the larger U.S. and global economies. You can connect with him on Twitter: @adambelz
Patents are just one measure of innovation, but in an area of inquiry that's as mysterious as it is consequential, we'll take what we can get.
Minnesota continues to generate a lot of patents, specifically in the Twin Cities and Rochester, according to data put together by the Brookings Institute.
The Twin Cities has the ninth-highest concentration of patents issued of any metropolitan area in America, an average of 3,068 per year between 2007 and 2011. The top patent-creating companies in the Twin Cities are 3M, Cardiac Pacemakers, Medtronic, Honeywell, Seagate and Boston Scientific.
And Rochester, thanks mostly to IBM, has the third-highest patents issued per capita in the country, behind only San Jose (read: Silicon Valley) and Burlington, Vermont, which also has a big IBM operation.