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Tickets available: 2024 State of the Valley Conference, March 1

logoFebruary 12, 2024 - Register now for the 2024 State of the Valley Conference Friday, March 1. The event will be livestreamed from San José State University. Count on the most recent data on the state of the Bay Area and illuminating analysis by experts who will break down the numbers. You can purchase a virtual ticket for $35. Your virtual ticket provides access to all livestream proceedings, the ability to post interactive chats and a PDF version of the 2024 Silicon Valley Index.

Learn more | Register

Rachel Massaro honored by Board of Supervisors

February 12, 2024 - Rachel Massaro, Vice President of Joint Venture, and Director of Research at the Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies was honored with a commendation from the Santa Clara County Board of Supervisors for their work. Susan Ellenberg, President of the Board of Supervisors, who presented Massaro with the award called Rachel a “nationally recognized leader in data analysis, including serving as the primary researcher and energetic scholar behind the annual Silicon Valley Index, an essential tool for Silicon Valley leaders across economic sectors for more than 25 years.”

Joint Venture board adopts strategic plan

February 12, 2024 - 2023 marks Joint Venture’s 30-year anniversary. It remains the only organization that gathers leaders and change-makers from across all sectors to spotlight issues, launch projects, and work toward innovative solutions. To mark the anniversary, Joint Venture’s board has adopted a new strategic plan that will double down on its mission and set off a capacity-building effort over the next five years with three distinct pillars: to grow research expertise; to convene the region; and a plan for financial sustainability.

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Institute: GBI modeling shows impact for Santa Clara County families

coverFebruary 12, 2024 - Joint Venture’s Institute has completed a report in partnership with the University of Washington School of Social Work, Center for Women’s Welfare which models guaranteed basic income (GBI) scenarios. Supported by a 2022-23 grant from the County of Santa Clara with additional support from Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Modeling Guaranteed Basic Income & Household Income Adequacy in Santa Clara County examines how GBI programs can help move families out of poverty and into economic security.

Read the report

Meet Barry Vesser, The Climate Center

February 12, 2024 - Carl Sagan once said, “Anything else you’re interested in is not going to happen if you can’t breathe the air and drink the water. Don’t sit this one out. Do something." Barry Vesser, COO of the Climate Center, has taken this sentiment to heart. Barry leads The Climate Center’s program and policy development and implementation teams. Barry moved around a great deal as a young man and served in the Peace Corps in the Philippines where he was inspired by the sense of community and kindness that was expressed by people of modest means. 

Read the profile

Silicon Valley Indicators

indicators home page Comprehensive information and data about the Silicon Valley ecosystem is always available at

Data and charts from the Silicon Valley Index (and more) are presented on an interactive website that allows users to explore Silicon Valley trends. Indicators are presented by the Institute for Regional Studies. Housed within Joint Venture Silicon Valley, the Institute provides data and analysis on issues facing dense metropolitan regions.

What is Joint Venture Silicon Valley?

Established in 1993, Joint Venture provides data and analysis on issues affecting the Silicon Valley economy and quality of life. The organization convenes established and emerging leaders—from business, government, academia, labor and the broader community—to spotlight issues, and work collaboratively toward innovative solutions.

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So I think it’s fair to assert that any alternative to the phrase “tip of the iceberg” will be sorely inadequate. Ultimately, what that phrase means is that not only have we seen just a tiny sliver of a sizeable problem, but that the problem – like a ship hitting an iceberg – is one of ‘titanic’ proportions.

Here’s the actual definition, from Merriam-Webster online:

tip of the iceberg noun phrase
: the earliest, most obvious, or most superficial manifestation of some phenomenon
First Known Use 1969, in the meaning defined above
History and Etymology from an iceberg being mostly submerged

Without a crystal ball, there’s no way to know what the future will hold. We can model, project, ‘assume’ and ‘surmise’ all we want, but the ripple effects of the COVID-19 pandemic on our economic and community health will undoubtedly get worse before they get better, and will be palpable for a long time to come. What we’ve seen thus far is truly just the tip of the iceberg! And there, I said it again (another sigh).

So… are we doomed to keep repeating the same old phrase over and over again? Maybe. But if necessity remains the mother of invention, then this global, collective ‘brainstorm’ is certain to come up with something.


P.S. Let’s be honest, these are depressing... But to reiterate my point, here are just a few of the 189,000 search results for COVID + “tip of the iceberg” in the news:

  • “The launch of the COVID-19 Fund for Feeding Families with multimillion-dollar donations from Sheryl Sandberg and her fiance Tom Bernthal… is a great model for keeping Second Harvest Food Bank going during the crisis. But that’s just the tip of the iceberg.”
    (Mercury News, 3/14/20)
  • “The increase in reported cases is the result of several factors including the spread of the virus and increased testing capacity, health officials said. Still, officials say the number of confirmed cases is still likely the tip of the iceberg.”
    (Mercury News, 3/29/20)
  • “Although public health officials have been providing daily updates about numbers of cases, deaths, hospitalizations and tests, those figures could be ‘the tip of the iceberg,’ said Dr. Neeraj Sood, vice dean of research at the Price School.”
    (NBC News, 4/12/20)
  • “…experts say the various counts kept by several news outlets is likely just the ‘tip of the iceberg’ of the true toll of COVID-19 in senior facilities.”
    (Business Insider, 4/13/20)
  • “So the current reported U.S. death toll may only be ‘the tip of the iceberg,"’ Hayward [an expert on mortality statistics who is a member of a CDC advisory council on vital statistics] told ProPublica.”
    (Newsweek, 4/16/20)
  • [Regarding the early action taken in Seattle] “‘We knew the numbers we saw were just the tip of the iceberg, and that there were much greater numbers below the surface,’ Jenny A. Durkan, the mayor of Seattle, said in an interview. ‘We had to act.’”
    (New York Times, 4/23/20)
  • “‘More than 300 startups have lopped off over 30,000 jobs since March 11,’ the [National Venture Capital Association] said, adding, ‘This is likely just the tip of the iceberg for what will be tough times for startups over the coming months.’”
    (Silicon Valley Business Journal, 4/28/20)
  • “When Broadway closed on March 12, it was only the tip of the iceberg: live theater has since suspended operations around the country.”
    (New York Times, 5/4/20)
  • [Regarding pandemic-related innovations] “Other groundbreaking innovations include Datos Health’s new remote management system for home-quarantined COVID-19 cases; and’s real-time remote vital signs monitoring app, which allows anyone to easily measure oxygen saturation, respiration rate, heart rate and heart rate variability – just by looking into a smartphone camera. And this is just the tip of the iceberg.”
    (Forbes, 5/4/20)

And let’s round off the list with this one, which refers to the “tip of the tip” of the iceberg:

  • “In India, with 1.3 billion people, hundreds of millions of poor, living in unhygienic and crammed-in conditions, there is a very real fear that if the testing starts too far behind the curve, the confirmed cases won’t even account for the tip of the tip of the iceberg.”
    (Reuters, 4/6/20)

About the Author

Rachel Massaro is the Vice President at Joint Venture as well as the Director of Research at Joint Venture's Silicon Valley Institute for Regional Studies . You can learn more about Rachel on her bio page.

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In The News

February 20, 2024 - (San Jose Spotlight) - How many Santa Clara County tech workers have been laid off? ...hiring spiked the region’s market cap to an unheard $16 trillion, according to Russell Hancock, CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

February 18, 2024 - (Silicon Valley) - Bay Area tech layoffs finally start to weigh down region’s job market: Tech companies seek heightened efficiency, said Russell Hancock, CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

February 14, 2024 - (EdSource) - California parents pay among the highest costs for child care: Child care in techie Silicon Valley is even costlier...according to the 2023 Joint Venture Silicon Valley Index. More

February 14, 2024 - (San Jose Spotlight) - Silicon Valley parents face highest child care costs: Child care in Silicon Valley is even more costly...according to the 2023 Joint Venture Silicon Valley Index. More

February 9, 2024 - (Mercury News) - Pure Storage, Google, mobile games company trim Bay Area jobs as tech cutbacks widen: “Tech companies hired too many people during the pandemic, and now we are seeing right-sizing,” said Russell Hancock, president of Joint Venture Silicon Valley...More

January 24, 2024 - (NBC) - Bay Area tech layoffs continue despite overall economy getting AI-related boost: "...This happens over and over, it's been our story for 80 years," said Russell Hancock, CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More

January 19, 2024 - (Mercury News) - Bay Area job market surges with big December gains to cap off 2023: “The job numbers are impressive but not surprising,” said Russell Hancock, president of Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

January 16, 2024 - (New York Post) - Tech moguls ‘optimistic’ about San Francisco despite sprawling urban decay: “San Francisco is vibrant. It’s a magnificent city,” Russell Hancock, president and chief executive of the think tank Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

January 16, 2024 - (Los Angeles Times) - All is lost in San Francisco? City loyalists take issue with naysayers. Data may back them up: Russell Hancock, CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, said most disagree that San Francisco has somehow lost its allure. More

January 8, 2024 - (Silicon Valley) - Housing projects supplant Bay Area offices, stores as tech boom fades: “We will see how the housing conversions work out,” said Russell Hancock, president of Joint Venture Silicon Valley More

January 5, 2024 - (Silicon Valley Business Journal) - Economic Forecast: Tech remains king in Silicon Valley - Russell Hancock, president and CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley, said tech industry jobs losses also need to be put into perspective. More

January 5, 2024 - (SIlicon Valley Business Journal) - Economic Forecast: Empty offices, smaller projects become the new norm - "...they prefer working in pajamas and staring into a computer screen because they are utility-maximizing people,” said Russell Hancock, CEO of Joint Venture Silicon Valley. More

January 2, 2024 - (Silicon Valley) - Bay Area office vacancies balloon to all-time high as tech wobbles: “Silicon Valley is an innovation economy,” Russell Hancock (CEO of Joint Venture) said. More