The California in the Nano Economy website represents an interactive, web-based version of applying the value chain research approach to a specific location (California) and the parts of a variety of industries that are impacted by a particular technology (nanotechnology). Information on this site primarily falls into the following categories where each represents one of the main steps in the value chain research process.
The value chain section presents a visual depiction of the broad structure of the nanotechnology value chain. From the value chain image, users can click on any stage or sector to see basic information that describes the activities within that area and a list of companies in California that fall under the category. Each company name is a hyperlink to a new page that provides details on the activities of that location.
Each location page covers information related to the physical location, business descriptors (i.e., year established and employment), and products or services. This information was generated by integrating data from a variety of secondary sources to create a database of firms and organizations engaged in activities related to nanotechnology. This is part of a larger effort to begin mapping the U.S. and global nano economy of which a significant subset of companies are located in California. Each page also includes information on the location’s position in the value chain, including value chain sectors and subsectors, industry-focus areas, value-adding activities, and the degree the company appears to be focused on nanotechnology. Each location was placed into these positions by analyzing the location-specific information. See the overview of location pages for more information available on each one.
The maps section includes interactive geographic maps of all the locations in California included on the website. Multiple views are available that present different variables related to each location and are set apart by varying the color, size, and shape of the map marker. When the cursor is placed on a location, the information associated with that location appears. Users can select the variables they want to view to analyze different aspects of the firms and organizations in California. An additional section features company profiles that provide more in-depth overviews of the firms most cited by the secondary sources collected as being involved with nanotechnology in California.
Other sections of the website focus on important dynamics that impact the development of the nanotechnology activities in California. The workforce development and education resources section contains information on the educational and workforce preparation programs in the state including everything from grades K-12 through community college and certificate programs to four-year universities and graduate degree programs. The public policies section provides information on the role of local economic development and safety organizations and initiatives in California. The resources section lists California-specific data sources related to nanotechnology activities.
The final section of the site is a work in progress that focuses on competitiveness indicators used to evaluate the level of development of countries, states, and regions working in nanotechnology. This section provides an overview of the various indicators and benchmarking strategies being used to evaluate the competitiveness of countries, states, and regions working in nanotechnology and California's rankings in existing benchmarking studies.