In the world of economic development, we tend to talk a lot about “clusters.”
These economic clusters are simply networks of related companies and institutions within a certain geographic area. Often, these clusters gather together in a given area due to some built-in advantage, whether it’s available talent, a favorable regulatory environment, or some other reason.
For instance, the Detroit metro area economic cluster has long been focused on the automotive industry. That’s attracted specialized workers to the region, promoted cooperation between local companies and generally made Michigan a good place for transportation companies and related workers to be.
Here in Denver south, we have our own clusters.
The big one here has for years been Broadcasting & Telecommunications, employing more than 17,900 people in the area. Dish Network, of course, is headquartered nearby and that’s attracted a wide range of related companies and telecom industry providers to the region. The cluster has the highest location quotient along all of the Denver south region’s clusters and subclusters, which is simply a measure of how concentrated a particular industry is in the area.
Software & Electronics is another of our major clusters, employing more than 18,000 people in the area.
But, whatever the industry, they’re almost all growing fast.
Overall, seven of the 10 industry clusters and subclusters we measure in the Denver south region posted employment growth between 2015 and 2016 (the latest year that this data is available), and nine of the 10 have added jobs over the last five years.
But none have outperformed Healthcare & Life Sciences. It’s the fastest-growing segment in the Denver south region and is also now the largest cluster in our area in terms of employment.
This is great news for Denver south as well as our healthcare and life sciences companies overall. It also means high-paying jobs in a growing industry for our workforce, a culture of innovation and growth in the area, and a strong economic engine to the benefit of the entire Denver South business community.

Here’s a quick look at how all of the economic clusters in Denver south stack up in terms of employment growth:

Cluster Total Employment Employment Growth (2006-2016)
Healthcare & Life Sciences 22,697 +11%
Cleantech 1,229 +8.2%
Aerospace 4,429 +8.1%
Engineering Services 6,823 +4.2%
Fossil Fuels 1,856 +4.0
Investments 9,944 +3.6%
Software & Electronics 18,197 +3%
Broadcasting & Telecommunications 17,908 +1.6%
Insurance 9,969 +0.4%
Banking & Finance 11,974 -2.7%

Want to learn more?
Check out more data and research on Denver south’s key industries and learn how the region is leading Colorado’s economic growth.