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Classified in: Covid-19 virus
Subject: Economic News/Analysis

Report: Washington State's $35B Life Science Industry Grows Amid Economic Downturn

Life Science Washington, the state's industry trade association, today released a new Economic Impact Report, revealing Washington state's $35.3 billion life science industry supports more than 100,000 jobs throughout the state and continues to serve as a buffer during economic downturns.

The report finds from 2015 to 2021 Washington's life science industry employment grew 33.6%, outpacing national life science job growth and bolstering the local economy as the private sector saw a sharp decline in jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic. The industry's growth has been enabled by a combination of trends, including the rise of companies and research institutes working at the forefront of next generation cancer therapies, a growing expertise in manufacturing complex cell therapies, and the convergence of life sciences and machine learning.

"Washington's life science industry continued to add jobs during the pandemic," said Marc Cummings, President and CEO of Life Science Washington. "As local companies continue to grow and expand within the state and new large players move in, we're seeing an array of jobs across a wide spectrum of activity including research and development, clinical trials, manufacturing, as well as tapping the region's deep expertise in computing to accelerate life science innovation."

Washington's life science industry, recognized as a top 10 hub nationwide, directly employs more than 43,500 individuals across more than 1,100 life science organizations in 136 cities. The industry also employs a high concentration, or 45%, of women, one of the highest concentrations in a STEM-based industry in Washington and nationally.

"The steady expansion of Washington's life science industry shows companies' dedication to tackling some of the toughest global health challenges through cutting-edge science," said Richard Fabian, CEO of FUJIFILM SonoSite and Life Science Washington Board Chair. "The industry has solidified its position as a top life science cluster in the country and set the foundation for companies ? from early stage start-ups to large industry players ? to build, thrive and expand in Washington state."

The report also provides further insight into the state's industry growth, even during an economic downturn. Over the years, 2020 and 2021, life science employment in the state increased nearly 10%, while private sector jobs contracted during the same period. The report also found that in 2021, life science employees' salaries averaged more than $123,000, topping the average wage of $84,000 in other private sector jobs in the state that same year. This upward trend is consistent with prior Economic Impact Reports that show Washington's life science industry often serves as a buffer to the state's economy during economic slowdowns.

Leaders in the Washington state life science industry will come together to discuss the report's findings and latest innovation in the region at Life Science Innovation Northwest, the Pacific Northwest's largest annual life science conference, on April 25-26. To register for the event, go here.

View the full Economic Impact Report here.

About Life Science Washington

Life Science Washington connects its 500+ members to each other and to funding, talent, partners and essential business services and elevates the industry by promoting policies that strengthen the environment for ground-breaking research and product development that improves and saves lives. For more information, visit https://lifesciencewa.org/.

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