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Industry Breakdown

Biotech & Technology

Innovation continues to flourish in San Diego

Two forces were at work in the first half of 2013 influencing San Diego’s biotech and technology sectors: venture capital and sequestration. While a slow revival in venture capital funding brought jobs growth to the region’s tech and biotech companies, budget cuts implemented by the U.S. government affected federal research funds and contractors working in the defense technology sector. Following are some of the big stories in biotech and technology so far this year.

Construction

Industry in mixed state, both in and out of the job site

San Diego’s construction industry seems to be a mixed bag of cement with no solid foundation yet of whether it is improving as indicated by backlogs, employment and housing construction. There was also significant news outside the actual building of structures: an iconic architect passed away, and pleas were entered in the South Bay corruption case.

Defense

Defense industry works with less

Automatic spending cuts under sequestration became an unfortunate reality in early 2013 and initial ripple effects appeared soon after. Space and Naval Warfare Systems Command (SPAWAR), which employs about 5,000 people in San Diego, went on a hiring freeze and many Navy ship repair and maintenance workers were warned of potential layoffs.

Education

Public schools score a win; UCSD launches brain mapping center

In the first six months of 2013, California’s public schools got a boost when state lawmakers reached a budget deal in June, the University of California, San Diego, created a center for brain mapping, local college campuses continued to work on increasing student body diversity and recent college graduates find that the price tag for their degree is worth the student debt they incurred, as it pays off in finding stable employment.

Finance

Economy inching up, merger activity sees uptick

San Diego’s leading economic indicators rose for every month this year. High-tech firm Cymer, banks and life-science real estate firms were among those that merged, the “too big to fail” bank bill faces opposition from different quarters and more small businesses are investing in commercial real estate.

Health

Health care dominates headlines with federal reforms, medical marijuana controversy

In the first half of 2013, the health care industry continued to face uncertainty and change brought about by rising costs, an aging population, reimbursement issues and health care reform. But county hospitals continue to expand and renovate, and health care remains a bright spot for the construction industry in San Diego. The medical marijuana battle rages on in the city, and Scripps Health took over the assets of bankrupt San Diego Hospice. Here are some of the top stories in health so far this year.

Hospitality & Retail

Beer keeps booming, airport expands and new plans shape up for Balboa Park

San Diego’s hospitality and retail sectors are gaining their footing in the new economy with a combination of entrepreneurship and revitalization. The first half of 2013 saw the continued emergence of a local brewing industry, big changes at the airport and Balboa Park, a rebranded water park, and renovated shopping centers regionwide. Among the big stories in San Diego’s hospitality and retail sectors so far this year:

Law

Loss of talented legal minds marks first half of 2013

The local community lost three legal giants in the first half of 2013 while Thomas Jefferson School of Law found a new leader and the San Diego County Bar Association moved into a new home.

Real Estate

Industry bounces back, homeowners find mortgage relief

The real estate industry is slowly coming back with the economy. Among the big real estate stories in the first half of 2013 were:

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