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Silicon shire

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Silicon Shire logo
The logo of the Silicon Shire region.

In 2012 the Eugene, Oregon, metro area of the United States was dubbed the Silicon Shire.[1][2][3][4] Like many regions that have taken on Silicon-themed names,[5] the Silicon Shire is home to a thriving technology sector.[6][7][8][9] In 2015, the region's rapid growth led to Eugene being named one of "The Next Top 10 Cities For Tech Jobs" by Fast Company magazine.[10]

There are more than 400 companies in the Silicon Shire region, employing more than 4,570 people with an annual payroll of about $296 million.[11] Key factors in the region's growth are the presence of higher education, a high quality of life, a low cost environment, and technological advancements.[12] The region is home to the largest game developer cluster in Oregon,[13] and also is the location of Symantec's third largest site in the world.[14] In addition to technology, the region also boasts a significant healthcare sector as well as food processing, craft breweries, and small-scale agriculture.[15] Regional companies have developed partnerships with local school districts to advance STEM education in the region.[16]

In 2013, companies from the region organized an event at the University of Oregon which gave students and faculty a chance to mingle with representatives from local tech firms.[17] In early 2015, companies from the region partnered with an international advocacy group for mobile app developers to host an event featuring speakers including Sen. Ron Wyden and Rep. Peter Defazio.[11][18] Later that year, Alaska Airlines obtained a federal Small Community Air Service Development grant to establish a direct route connecting the region to Silicon Valley.[19]

In 2016, the City of Eugene, the Eugene Water and Electric Board, and the Lane Council of Governments partnered to construct a municipally-owned fiber network called EUGNet.[20][21] The development of this network and the region's well established tech sector were key factors that led to Eugene being named a "Gigabit City" by the Mozilla Foundation in early 2017.[22][23][24] Mozilla offered $150,000 in grants to regional organizations to fund a range of technology projects focused on making technology in the region more inclusive and engaging.[25]

In early 2018, the Silicon Shire region was featured in an article in WIRED Magazine.[26]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ KMTR Silicon Shire. 24 January 2014 – via YouTube.
  2. ^ "Eugene's Silicon Shire: The tech (and beer) are better here". Goodreads. 11 November 2013.
  3. ^ "OEN Talks with Silicon Shire Visionary Cale Bruckner". Oregon Entrepreneurs Network. 19 September 2012.
  4. ^ "EUGENE 2.0". ETHOS Magazine. 15 April 2015.
  5. ^ "Silicon America: A Map of Tech Hubs in the United States". StateTech Magazine. 8 November 2013.
  6. ^ Sinclair Broadcast Group (11 February 2013). "Silicon Shire: 'Eugene is a real hub for tech companies'". KVAL.
  7. ^ "Tech firms take off". The Register-Guard. 2 February 2014.
  8. ^ "Eugene-Springfield companies network on Silicon Shire website". Oregon Business. 10 December 2012.
  9. ^ "City Club of Eugene: What You Need To Know About The Tech Industry In Eugene". KLCC Radio. 4 December 2017.
  10. ^ "The Next Top 10 Cities For Tech Jobs". Fast Company. 13 July 2015.
  11. ^ a b "App developers meeting today on UO campus". The Register-Guard. 25 August 2015.
  12. ^ "State Representative Nancy Nathason - September-October 2014". Oregon Legislature.
  13. ^ "Building a gaming community fueled by Oregon talent". Portland Business Journal. 21 June 2017.
  14. ^ "Relocation". Travel Lane County.
  15. ^ "Heart of the Silicon Shire". Business in Focus. 19 September 2014.
  16. ^ "Application Narrative" (PDF). Oregon Department of Education. 12 March 2014.
  17. ^ "Silicon Shire connects faculty and students with local tech industry". University of Oregon. 28 February 2013.
  18. ^ "Eugene Startup Community Draws Widespread Praise". The ACT Blog. 10 September 2015.
  19. ^ "Connecting the Silicon Shire to the Silicon Valley". City of Eugene, OR. 10 November 2015.
  20. ^ "City of Eugene Community Broadband Strategic Plan" (PDF). EUGnet.org. 27 August 2013.
  21. ^ "High Speed Broadband Fiber". City of Eugene, OR. 17 March 2017.
  22. ^ "Mozilla selects Eugene as next Gigabit City" (PDF). Lane Workforce Partnership. 14 March 2017.
  23. ^ "A Public-Private Partnership for Gigabit Innovation and Internet Health". The Mozilla Blog. 14 March 2017.
  24. ^ "Eugene's "Silicon Shire" : No Orcs Here". Community Networks Blog. 24 March 2017.
  25. ^ "'Gigabit City' title to speed collaboration in Eugene". The Register-Guard. 15 March 2017.
  26. ^ "Everyone Hates Silicon Valley, Except Its Imitators". WIRED Magazine. 3 February 2018.