In his compelling follow-up to "The Rise of the Creative Class," Richard Florida outlines how certain cities succeed in attracting members of the "creative class"--the millions of people who work in information-age economic sectors and in industries driven by innovation and talent. Cities that succeed, Florida argues, are those that are able to attract and retain creative class members. They don't do this through the traditional strategies of tax incentives, suburban housing developments, and loose regulation, though; creative class members don't care about those details. Rather, they care about amenities and tolerance, and are drawn to cities with thriving bohemias and large gay populations. It is no coincidence, Florida asserts, that places likes Austin and San Francisco with their highly publicized open-mindedness and bohemia are at the forefront of the new economy, while cities like Detroit, in contrast, can't succeed unless they actively become a magnet for the creative class.
To prove his point, Florida presents a mass of information on the cities he cites, both thriving and failing cities, including gay and bohemian indices. Focusing on the economic geography of place, Florida explains lays out what cities need to do to have a chance at success.
"Florida and others are changing the American urban agenda. This is a guidebook to the new knowledge-based economy. He mines the best available research to lay out powerful new policy options. No wonder he is in such demand." - Terry Nichols Clark, Professor of Sociology and Coordinator of the Fiscal Austerity and Urban Innovation Project, University of Chicago