With the financial support from California legislation AB2664, UC Santa Barbara received $2.2 million in 2016 as SEED-SB grant to further innovation and entrepreneurship efforts by providing incubator space, equipment, entrepreneurial training, legal services, and other basics. This report covers responses from interviews with entrepreneurs to identify how SEED SB can better support the local STEM entrepreneurial community. These start-ups focused on one of the following technical areas: biotechnology, computer science/engineering, electronics, optical technology, and sustainability.

 

Data visualization in this project provide summaries on the background of the start-ups, background of the entrepreneur, resources used or desired, first significant funding, first hires, hiring challenges, and getting out of the garage. And all data visualization works are developed with a Javascript charting library AnyChart.

Client: CNSI (California NanoSystems Institute) 
Visual Designer: Lu Liu
Project Manager: Lubella Lenaburg
Video Editor: Rodger Luo
Output: Interactive Installation & Prints (Javascript, Sketch, Photoshop)
Duration: 1 month

Entrepreneurs Demography

The demographics of the people we interviewed who launched STEM start-ups are shown on the right circle figure. The five categories from top to bottom are if they identified as: female, the first-generation in their family to graduate from college, from a low-income background, a first-time entrepreneur (first start-up), and from an ethnic/racial minority group.

 

Circle graphs are also used to demonstrate the percent of specific type tech companies that reported each of seven qualitative characteristics, including whether the: 

  •  founding team included any faculty

  • main driver was affiliated with UCSB

  • start-up accessed any resources during the garage phase

  • start-up accessed programming support during the garage phase

  • start-up accessed UCSB facilities

  • start-up is still in the garage

  • start-up had/has an incubator space

From left to right, figures respectively show the percentage of those seven qualitative features for biotechnology companies, computer science/engineering companies, electronics 

companies, optical companies, sustainability companies

Technical areas that enterprises focused on are denoted by color as below color palette

Under each technical area, six quantitative characteristics were examined, including the number of:​​

Optical

Companies

Biotechnology

Companies

Electronics

Companies

CS/ Engineering

Companies

Sustainability

Companies

Below five radar charts respectively show the average of six quantitative characteristics of optical companies, biotechnology companies, electronics companies, cs/engineering companies, and sustainability companies. Each axis of the hexagon presents one property.

 

  • Co-founders

  • Faculty co-founders

  • Co-founders from UCSB

  • Years since company began

  • Resources accessed

  • Rounds of funding

To better show similarities and differences across technical areas in six quantitative characteristics, averages within technical areas are overlaid in the below graph

I also created a symmetric figure to display the value for each company interviewed sorted by life span. "We see a trend in companies that are younger than 5 years old, they do not tend to have faculty co-founders but are making use of resources. We also see the shaded area plotted in the radar chart tends to get larger over time, not only due to an increase in life span, but also due to an increased likelihood of receiving funding and accessing resources."

Another interesting observation is that companies under the same tech area tend to have a similar shape.

Company Life Span

(year/years)

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