Michigan SmartZones

What is a SmartZone?

A SmartZone pinpoints a distinct geographical location where tech-based companies, entrepreneurs, and other small businesses are located in close proximity to the community assets they need to help maintain and grow their businesses.

A SmartZone includes access to a technology business accelerator like Innovate Marquette, which promotes collaboration between resource partners such as universities, industry and research organizations, state and government municipalities, and other innovators within the community.

Essentially, a SmartZone is classified as a region in which there is a growing technology and innovation hub, with the right resources and accelerators available to facilitate entrepreneurial collaboration and incubation for new and emerging businesses.

Michigan SmartZones

Thanks to the Michigan Economic Development Corporation, the State of Michigan has designated twenty-one distinct tech hubs located all across the state, referred to as “SmartZones”. These areas encourage symbiotic collaborations between pillars of the community: universities, community organizations, municipalities, and public-private institutions. These individual organizations work together to promote innovation through the actualization, development, and growth of new ideas, supplying the necessary tools and resources to increase the state and region’s economic growth, available job opportunities, and technology-related business models. Each of Michigan’s SmartZones include technology business accelerator programs that offer a wide variety of services that help to mine technology from universities and established partners in order to help entrepreneurs and growing businesses secure the necessary tools, funding, and human capital to succeed.

Where are the other SmartZones in Michigan?

There are twenty one SmartZones geographically located in different regions of the state of Michigan. In the Upper Peninsula, also known as Region 1, there are three: Houghton/Hancock SmartZone, Sault Ste. Marie SmartZone, and Marquette SmartZone. All others lie below the bridge.

Explore this map to learn more about each one.