Hamburg's Manifesto Against the 'Creative Class'

A new manifesto is being circulated in Hamburg, Germany, where city officials have used the concept of the "creative class" to rebrand the city and lure in creative people. The resulting gentrification of the city has many locals upset.

Artists and social activists are pushing the manifesto in an attempt to dissuade the city's reliance on the "creative class"-based ideas of Richard Florida.

"In recent weeks, this manifesto has attracted a great deal of attention in Hamburg and throughout Germany. It is directed against an urban development policy that is based on a theory that Florida has developed over the past few years.

In his theory, Florida argues that cities must reinvent themselves. In contrast to the 1990s, they should no longer attempt to attract companies, but people. More specifically, the right people -- people who invent things, who promote change and who shape a city's image. He has classified these people as the 'creative class.' It's a theory that has had unintentional consequences -- including bitter conflicts in places like Hamburg."

Full Story: Who Has the Right to Shape the City?



The Creative Class Rises Up Against the Creative Class!

Only in Europe could creative liberals rise up against their overly-sensitive democratically-elected local officials and say, "We're not going to stand for your embrace of creative liberals!" I was in Hamburg about a year ago. The Haffenstadt had loads of tourists taking pictures of the construction! It was amazing. I have dozens of pictures of tourists dodging work crews just to snap photos of half-finished buildings. Hamburg could be the next Bilbao. Unfortunately, for many artists, it is getting too expensive. Berlin is cheaper. True, Hamburg has lost some funkiness. All of Germany has.

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