It might not be too long before the moniker “Silicon Slopes” for the Wasatch Front becomes as well known as “Silicon Valley” is for Northern California.

The growth of the tech sector in Salt Lake, Weber and Utah counties continues to skyrocket, according to a new report released Feb. 3 by the Washington D.C. think tank, Brookings Institution.

In “America’s Advanced Industries: What They Are, Where They Are, and Why They Matter,” 11.1 percent of Salt Lake City’s total jobs in 2013 were in “advanced industries,” which includes research and development and STEM-related companies. With more than 71,000 jobs in those sectors, that represents a 3.5-percent growth from the year before. Salt Lake’s percentage of tech jobs is 15th in the nation out of 100 metropolitan areas surveyed, according to the report.

In the Provo-Orem area, the percentage is even higher. More than 25,000, or 12 percent, of all jobs in Utah County are in “advanced industries,” putting that region at 12th in the nation. Meanwhile, 11.3 percent of jobs in Weber County are in those industries, or 14th in the nation.

The report states these “advanced industries” are key to the nation’s growing economy and in remaining competitive in a global market.

“America’s advanced industries are going to be critical to restoring broad-based prosperity in U.S. regions and in the nation,” said the report’s co-author, Mark Muro. “We should work hard and in new ways to enlarge them and increase their vitality.”

Read the report…