15 People Shaping Boston’s Tech Scene

Winston Churchill, quotes, inspiration
Words every entrepreneur learns to live by.

[Editors note: I enjoy fun reads, especially ones that illuminate movers and shakers outside of the Philly tech scene.]

Techies know that Boston packs a punch.

Even among heavyweights like New York and Silicon Valley, few cities can match what Boston brings to the ring. Anchored by top-tier research universities, littered with thousands of the nation’s most promising undergraduate and graduate students and checkered with world-class hospitals and labs, Boston has long been a cherished destination for young entrepreneurs with game-changing ideas.

Of the people who know Boston best — the Harvard and MIT lecturers, the fiercely loyal venture capitalists and the incubator stalwarts — many say that even among its bountiful advantages, the city has one unmatchable, largely unspoken asset: Its propensity at all levels — from wildly successful founders to wide-eyed MIT students — to help others succeed in the city’s startup ecosystem.

Mashable found 15 behind-the-scenes influencers and asked them about what makes the city a nerve center for tech startups — and what their favorite spots in Boston are, in case you happen to visit soon.

1. Jeffrey Bussgang, General Partner atFlybridge Capital Partners

Boston as a growing center of technological innovation and entrepreneurship: “The brainpower and the community in Boston is extraordinary.

“The brainpower and the community in Boston is extraordinary. The core institutions of Harvard and M.I.T. and the core hospitals give Boston the highest density of super-smart people you can possibly find,” says Bussgang, who is also a senior lecturer at Harvard Business School. “This is the most prideful startup culture you’ll find. In Los Angeles, Hollywood dominates the culture, and in New York, the media and Wall Street dominate; but in Boston, the innovation community is the dominant culture.

Favorite Boston athlete: Dustin Pedroia, [second baseman of the Boston Red Sox]. He’s 5-foot-9 and 165 pounds soaking wet, but he’s incredibly hard-working and intense.

2. John Harthorne, Founder and CEO at MassChallenge

Boston’s edge: The main advantage of Boston is the talent inside of it and the value of that talent. Through the university substructure, Boston produces thousands of talented and reasonably affordable graduates who focus on revolutionary ideas — big, game-changing, global ideas that aren’t iterative improvements on existing technologies.

Favorite Boston landmark: I totally love Fenway [Park]. I had my first beer there.

3. Christina Chase, Entrepreneur-in-Residence at Massachusetts Institute of Technology

The beauty of Boston’s entrepreneurial ecosystem: Boston has individuals who compete to have an impact and facilitate acceleration in their areas, but they also want to help others who are trying to make an impact. It’s a very inclusive community where entrepreneurs make themselves accessible to younger teams so they can share knowledge and help them overcome problems.

Favorite restaurant in Boston: Craigie On Main [in Cambridge, Mass.]. They have a killer burger.

Read the full list at Mashable.com.

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