top of page

Life Sciences Benchmarking and Opportunity Analysis

University of Pittsburgh Office of Economic Partnerships
Economic Strategy

The University of Pittsburgh Office of Economic Partnerships works to increase Pitt’s ability to partner on economic opportunities, connect the University to the global economy, and accelerate growth in the regional economy.

Pittsburgh is a premier region for life sciences research and The University of Pittsburgh is consistently ranked in the top five of recipients of National Institute of Health investment in life science-related research. The University of Pittsburgh commissioned Fourth Economy Consulting to benchmark the regional life sciences sector against peer regions and institutions to identify gaps and opportunities for the region in order to accelerate the development and economic impact of the existing life sciences base and raise the commercial assets on par with the research assets.

Our Approach

Our team facilitated a twelve-month research and strategic planning process during which we conducted a deep dive into the research programs, expertise, and assets within the Pittsburgh region; benchmarked the Pittsburgh region’s life sciences sector against a set of peer sectors; developed an inventory of regional life sciences firms and startups in the region; conducted interviews with global life sciences experts to understand key trends in the industry and Pittsburgh’s competitive position; developed materials for use with research and commercial partners that communicate the region’s advantages and opportunities and; worked closely with the Office of the Provost to develop and refine a strategy for engaging commercial leaders and growing the regional industry base.

The Results

Our team synthesized the initial benchmarking and gap analysis into a report, which was presented to internal Pitt and regional stakeholders. In order to generate momentum, we also developed a regional opportunity analysis, created an inventory of life sciences firms in the region, created and launched a website to aggregate efforts across the region, and organized the first Life Sciences Week in Pittsburgh with 14 events over 5 days that attracted more than 400 attendees and has become an annual event. Within the first year of release the report also catalyzed support for a new life science company incubation facility and early stage investment fund.


Pittsburgh, PA Region

Project Type

Economic Development Strategy

Client Type

Higher Education Institution



Final Deliverable Design Samples (Click to Enlarge)
bottom of page