Life sciences jobs booming in San Mateo County

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San Mateo County has seen massive growth in life sciences jobs in the last five years, according to a new study from the biotechnology trade organization, Biocom.

More than 31,000 jobs in the county are in life sciences, the report says, and of those more than half are in research and lab services – the bread and butter of innovation and new development. These jobs also come with average earnings of more than $225,000 per year, by far the highest in the nine-county Bay Area region.

While South San Francisco remains the epicenter of life science growth in the county – and the region – new ventures throughout our area, including in Redwood City, are driving this economic growth. More than 674 life science establishments call San Mateo County home.

Life sciences are big business across California, not just in the Bay Area. Statewide the industry is up eight percent in jobs numbers. There are nearly 240,000 life science employees in Southern California. Statewide, life sciences generates over $346 billion in economic output and the state saw a massive $4.24 billion in new funding from the National Institutes of Health last year. More than $1.7 billion of that came to the Bay Area.

“California is the fifth-largest economy globally, and life science is a key component of contributing to the growth, employment and success of the entire state,” said Joe Panetta, President and CEO of Biocom.

The report suggests that life science jobs will increase in the years to come, though there are potential landmines that could derail that growth, including an increasingly fraught trade relationship with China and Mexico. The high cost of living in the Bay Area and California at large, particularly when competitor states are often less expensive for housing and workspace, could also hinder long-term growth.

To see all the data of the report, click here.