Cities And The Creative Class, Kotkin And Florida

Why Richard Florida's creative class is about grassroots innovation, not symphony halls or "latte-sipping hipsters."

Speaking to Joel Kotkin and Richard Florida, Maisonneuve urban issues columnist Christopher DeWolf explores the debate surrounding Kotkin's and Florida's theories on cities and the creative class:

"In a recent Washington Post op-ed, Kotkin declared inner-city living to be a “niche lifestyle preferred mostly by the young, the childless and the rich.” The real action, he said, is now in suburbia and smaller cities like Fresno, California. Some have compared Kotkin’s views to those of David Brooks, the New York Times columnist who reduces the American city to a playground divided between such cliques as urban, latte-sipping hipsters, Volvo-driving, liberal inner-suburbanites and—Brooks’ darlings—the exurban Patio Man and Realtor Mom, who revel in their frontier paradise with childlike innocence.

Unfortunately, the debate over the creative class increasingly resembles a Fox News shouting match. Florida is portrayed as a big-government lackey who advocates reckless spending on museums and symphony halls, while Kotkin is accused of pandering to a social-conservative agenda."

Thanks to Phillip Todd

Full Story: Creative Class War: The Debate over Richard Florida's Ideas


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