An Innovation Case Study: Pittsburgh

This past February, Uber announced it was partnering with CMU to open a 53,000-square-foot research and development facility focused on designing self-driving cars. It also hired away more than 40 of Carnegie Mellon’s researchers, prompting grumbles about the big tech companies swiping the best local talent. But most people are glad to have them here. “As you’re recruiting executives to move here [for a startup job], Google provides a sense of stability,” says Sean Ammirati, a partner at Birchmere Ventures, a local investment company. “If the startup doesn’t work out, there is a place to transition to. And a lot of people who work at those big companies get bored pretty quick, so they look for something different to do.”