The South Florida Technology Alliance has been working on a significant campaign to strengthen and promote the tech community in South Florida for some time, and that campaign has now been officially announced.
For many years, the SFTA has been the primary regional organization promoting high technology in the South Florida region. Our mission has been to promote the growth, success and awareness of the South Florida regional technology community. We focus on “the business of technology”, and through events, networking, programs and education, we provide regional companies and other groups an active forum to grow the business of technology in our region. That mission is the foundation for this campaign.
This region was once the home of a strong technology community where the PC and the smart phone were born, and in the 1980s it ranked with Silicon Valley as a world-renowned center of excellence. It has the potential to achieve that level, again, particularly with the recent addition of Life Sciences technologies. We feel the time is right to move from potential to reality.
This will be a significant, long term campaign to bring South Florida back to it earlier position as a nationally recognized center of technological excellence. The campaign will focus on:
- Strengthening the regional community by promoting better collaboration and interconnection between existing people and organizations and adding key missing pieces. It will consider the entire region of Miami and its neighboring counties as our technology assets are spread widely, and rather evenly throughout the region. Only be working together can we achieve the critical mass needed to compete with Silicon Valley and other centers.
- Promoting the region, both locally and nationally, by proactively and reactively telling the story of what is going on, already, in the region and what the region is really capable of achieving. This story has not been well told so few people understand what we already have, much less what more can be done.
This campaign is different from those in the past in several ways. First, it is a region-wide campaign, bringing together the assets from the entire region. No single county has a critical mass of assets, large enough to compete with other major centers, but the region as a whole does. Second, it is a systematic approach with many mutually-supporting programs, not a piece-meal action. And, third, it is a collaborative approach that, we hope, will encourage all the different organizations in the region to work together.
The goal is to grow jobs, investment and business in the region by making it an attractive place for technology companies to locate, operate and grow. More than 60,000 people already work in high technology positions in this region, in high paying, rewarding jobs, but we need to grow that significantly if technology is to become an economic driver for South Florida – as it should.
As the first program in this campaign, SFTA has opened this informational website that provides links to regional resources and organizations, includes a regional events calendar and provides a blog for comment and discussion. Like the campaign, the website includes all high tech sectors and the entire South Florida region. We hope that website will be a resource for everyone in this community and nationally to use to find about what is going on in this area. A look at the resources and assets shown on the site should give everyone a reason to believe we already have a strong technology foundation in South Florida that we can build on to make the region great, again.
This announcement is just the first in what will be a multi-year effort. SFTA will be expanding our traditional activities and launching new programs and we hope to work with the many other good organization in this region on programs of mutual interest. We are looking forward to working with everyone in this region to bring the area back to a position of technical prominence.