Innovators in Boston, San Diego, San Francisco, Northwest Top World Economic Forum’s List of Technology Pioneers

Xconomy National — 

The World Economic Forum—the body behind the exclusive annual gathering in Davos, Switzerland—today released its “Technology Pioneers” list for 2011. An unusually large number of the companies on the list (11 out of 31) are located in or near Xconomy’s home cities—see the rundown below.

For the Pioneers list, the WEF singles out companies that “represent the cutting edge in innovation and are poised to have a critical impact on the future of business, industry and society,” in the words of today’s announcement. To be chosen, an honoree “must be involved in the development of a major technology and/or innovation and have the potential for long-term impact on business and society. In addition, it must demonstrate visionary leadership and show all the signs of being a long-standing and sustainable market leader—and its technology must be proven.”

The Technology Pioneers selection committee includes technology and media executives as well as government, NGO, and university officials.

This year’s honorees will receive recognition at the “Summer Davos”—the Annual Meeting of the New Champions—in Tianjin, China, from September 13 to 15.


Adimab (Lebanon, NH)—Antibody-based drug discovery and optimization.

Digital Lumens (Boston)—Efficient LED-based lighting systems.

Ion Torrent (Gilford, CT)—Rapid semiconductor-based genome sequencing. (Recently acquired by Life Technologies.)

Medicine in Need (Cambridge, MA)—Reformulating drugs and vaccines for delivery in developing countries.

San Diego

On-Ramp Wireless (San Diego)—Low-power monitoring and control for smart grid and industrial applications.

San Francisco

Aster Data (San Carlos, CA)—Rapid analytics for very large datasets.

GetJar Networks (San Mateo, CA)—Cross-platform app store for Android, BlackBerry, Windows Mobile, iPhone, and Symbian devices.

OpenDNS (San Francisco)—Domain name system management with built-in security.

ReputationDefender (Redwood City, CA)—Online identity management to protect against identity theft and defamation.

Scribd (San Francisco)—Cross-platform, online publishing and document sharing.


Ostara Nutrient Recovery Technologies (Vancouver, BC)—Converting phosphorus and ammonia in wastewater into fertilizer.

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2 responses to “Innovators in Boston, San Diego, San Francisco, Northwest Top World Economic Forum’s List of Technology Pioneers”

  1. Jerry Jeff says:

    Wade, I know you’re a smart phone aficionado and I’m certainly not, so would you agree that a cross-platform app store meets the lofty goals of “potential for long-term impact on business and society”? Isn’t it just the contemporary version of the software store?

  2. Wade RoushWade Roush says:

    @Jerry — Interesting point. My guess is that the WEF selection committee wanted to recognize the app store phenomenon but boost a company that isn’t doing it in a proprietary, platform-specific, or company-specific way. Another interesting company building a more open app store is OpenAppMkt.