Harvard Community

An Ecosystem of Innovation

Harvard is at the heart of Massachusetts’ vibrant innovation economy.  The academic, research,
and business expertise of Harvard transforms early stage ideas into groundbreaking companies
— driving innovation, discovering cures, and building the regional economy.

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Beyond the Campus

Between 2011 and 2015, Massachusetts companies were constantly among the top recipients of
venture capital investment nationwide. Harvard's high rate of connection to the innovative
companies that received these investments demonstrates Harvard's role in allowing Massachusetts
to thrive as an engine of entrepreneurship and new enterprise.

$4.1 Billion
Total research dollars attracted to Massachusetts by Harvard.
$19.2 Billion
Total venture capital dollars invested in Massachusetts companies.
Percentage of Massachusetts companies that received venture capital funding between 2011 and 2015 that are Harvard connected.

Source: CB Insights

21 Harvard-connected biotech companies that received venture capital also became publicly traded companies since 2011.
  • 2015
  • 2014
  • 2013
  • 2012
  • 2011

Year-by-Year Data

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$2.4 Billion

Total National Institutes of Health research dollars invested in Massachusetts.

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$5.5 Billion

Total Venture Capital dollars invested in Massachusetts (across all sectors).

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$7.9

Billion

Total dollars invested in the Massachusetts economy.

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27 of 30

biotech companies that received venture capital dollars have a Harvard connection.

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92%

$933.9 Million

venture capital dollars went to Harvard-connected biotech companies.

Investor Connections

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50 Investments *

were made in 2015 by the top fifteen biotech funders.

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13 of the top 15

investment funders have a Harvard connection.

* Sometimes multiple investors provided capital to the same company during the same funding round.

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$2.3 Billion

Total National Institutes of Health research dollars invested in Massachusetts.

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$4.4 Billion

Total Venture Capital dollars invested in Massachusetts (across all sectors).

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$6.7

Billion

Total dollars invested in the Massachusetts economy.

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26 of 29

biotech companies that received venture capital dollars have a Harvard connection.

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99%

$859.1 Million

venture capital dollars went to Harvard-connected biotech companies.

Investor Connections

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20 Investments *

were made in 2014 by the top four biotech funders.

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4 of the top 4

investment funders have a Harvard connection.

* Sometimes multiple investors provided capital to the same company during the same funding round.

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$2.4 Billion

Total National Institutes of Health research dollars invested in Massachusetts.

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$3 Billion

Total Venture Capital dollars invested in Massachusetts (across all sectors).

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$5.4

Billion

Total dollars invested in the Massachusetts economy.

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17 of 19

biotech companies that received venture capital dollars have a Harvard connection.

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99%

$310.9 Million

venture capital dollars went to Harvard-connected biotech companies.

Investor Connections

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14 Investments *

were made in 2013 by the top six biotech funders.

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6 of the top 6

investment funders have a Harvard connection.

* Sometimes multiple investors provided capital to the same company during the same funding round.

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$2.5 Billion

Total National Institutes of Health research dollars invested in Massachusetts.

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$3.2 Billion

Total Venture Capital dollars invested in Massachusetts (across all sectors).

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$5.7

Billion

Total dollars invested in the Massachusetts economy.

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25 of 27

biotech companies that received venture capital dollars have a Harvard connection.

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93%

$567.4 Million

venture capital dollars went to Harvard-connected biotech companies.

Investor Connections

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29 Investments *

were made in 2013 by the top six biotech funders.

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6 of the top 7

investment funders have a Harvard connection.

* Sometimes multiple investors provided capital to the same company during the same funding round.

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$2.5 Billion

Total National Institutes of Health research dollars invested in Massachusetts.

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$3 Billion

Total Venture Capital dollars invested in Massachusetts (across all sectors).

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$5.5

Billion

Total dollars invested in the Massachusetts economy.

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34 of 37

biotech companies that received venture capital dollars have a Harvard connection.

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91%

$837.1 Million

venture capital dollars went to Harvard-connected biotech companies.

Investor Connections

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37 Investments *

were made in 2013 by the top six biotech funders.

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8 of the top 9

investment funders have a Harvard connection.

* Sometimes multiple investors provided capital to the same company during the same funding round.

Harvard is a liberal arts school at heart. We think about the environmental, cultural and ethical aspects of everything we do. This enriches our work and brings a different kind of person here. It also defines us. We’re not just doing research for the sake of doing research. We’re doing it because we want to make a positive impact.

DAVID WEITZ

Mallinckrodt Professor of Physics and Applied Physics and Founder of GNUBio, Inc., now the Digital Biology Center, Cambridge or Bio-Rad Laboratories

Academic Network
Affiliated Hospitals
Harvard-Powered Businesses
Venture Capital

Mapping Our Impact

A look around Boston and Cambridge illustrates the many ways that students, faculty, researchers, and funders from around the world intersect to fuel the regional life sciences economy. We are dedicated to playing an important role in the development and growth of this rich, dynamic network.

Harvard prides itself on its basic research — our scientists are making the discoveries that yield commercial breakthroughs. They also act as advisors and champions, helping to shape successful companies.

CURTIS KEITH

Chief Scientific Officer, Blavatnik Biomedical Accelerator

A History of Excellence

2015

Warren Zapol, the Reginald Jenney Professor of Anesthesia at Harvard Medical, has developed a system that produces nitric oxide (NO) gas from the air. NO is a treatment for life threatening conditions, and until now it was expensive and has had to be administered in a modern hospital setting. Dr. Zapol’s discovery could make treatment with NO more economical and enable its delivery in parts of the world that currently lack the resources required.

2015

The School of Engineering and Applied Sciences receives a $400 million gift – the largest in Harvard’s history - to support research, teaching, financial aid, and faculty development. To honor John Paulson’s generosity, the School will be renamed the Harvard John A. Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences.

2014

A donation from Steve Ballmer will allow the School of Engineer and Applied Science to increase its computer science faculty by 50 percent over the next few years, to 36 from 24. The increase in computer science faculty is part of a broader growth plan at SEAS, which includes an eventual move to new facilities in Allston.

2014

Massachusetts remained the second highest concentration of biotech venture capital investment in the United States. Ninety percent of the Massachusetts biotech companies that received venture capital in 2014 had a connection to Harvard.

2014

The Harvard School of Public Health receives a $350 million gift – the second largest in Harvard’s history – to support efforts to tackle the world’s toughest health challenges. In recognition of the Chan family’s generosity, the School of Public Health will be renamed, and be called the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health.

2014

Harvard professor Kevin Eggan and graduate student Sophie De Boar announce a discovery that could increase the number of therapies available for testing in clinical trials to treat amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), or Lou Gehrig’s Disease.

2014

Donhee Ham, Gordon McKay Professor of Electrical Engineering and Applied Physics, and his student Hosang Yoon release research about the kinetic properties of Graphene. The research may allow for further miniaturizing of electronics and improved energy efficiency and battery life.

2014

The Harvard Innovation Launch Lab, an extension of the hugely successful iLab, opens its doors to high potential Harvard alumni startups. The Launch Lab is a 3,000 sq. ft. space that will host between 10 and 15 teams which have at least one recent Harvard graduate as a founding member.

Committed to innovation.

Committed to the Massachusetts economy.

Our belief in strong research and a rich network of interdisciplinary collaborations make Harvard an important piece of the Massachusetts economic ecosystem. We are grateful members of this community and are committed to continued partnership, investment, and innovation. We are excited about the impact that our collective contributions will have on the future of life sciences – both in and around Boston, and across the world.