Mar 17, 2022 - Business

Philly’s tech sector sees modest growth

Growth in tech workers per capita by metro area, 2019-2020
Data: Brookings Institution and U.S. Census Bureau. Note: Metro areas with fewer than 1,000 tech workers in 2020 were excluded; Map: Kavya Beheraj/Axios

Philadelphia is one of the cities benefiting from the diffusion of tech jobs from traditional concentrated areas like the Bay Area and New York City during the pandemic.

The big picture: The rise of remote work has provided an opportunity for cities outside of tech's coastal hubs to lure talent away, Axios' Margaret Harding McGill and Erica Pandey report.

Catch up fast: Before the pandemic, the largest tech hubs (San Francisco, San Jose, Austin, Boston, Seattle, Los Angeles, New York and Washington, D.C.) represented more than 38.2% of the nation’s tech employment, per Brookings.

  • While the biggest sectors, like Silicon Valley, still have a stronghold on the bulk of tech jobs, growth is increasing nationwide, and some firms are looking for locations with cheaper costs of living.

Yes, but: The growth in Philly is modest. The metro saw a 0.4% growth rate of tech jobs between 2019 and 2020.

  • Between 2015 and 2019, tech work was on a slight decline in the metro, losing 169 jobs or 0.1%

Zoom out: Pittsburgh's metro area also saw some gains in the first year of the pandemic, but other metros in the commonwealth can't say the same.

  • Reading, Scranton, Allentown and York metro areas saw declines between 2019 and 2020.

What to watch: The report suggests that the spread from tech hubs is likely to continue.


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