Richard Florida is a huge influencer on my thinking about Startup Communities. On p.24, as I’m introducing the thinking behind the historical frameworks that helped me understand this better, I highlight his work specifically.
“Finally, the third explanation of startup communities, the notion of the creative class, comes from geography. Richard Florida describes the tie between innovation and creative-class individuals. Th e creative class is composed of individuals such as entrepreneurs, engineers, professors, and artists who create “meaningful new forms.” Creative-class individuals, Florida argues, want to live in nice places, enjoy a culture with a tolerance for new ideas and weirdness, and—most of all—want to be around other creativeclass individuals. Th is is another example of network eff ects, because a virtuous cycle exists where the existence of a creative class in an area attracts more creative-class individuals to the area, which in turn makes the area even more valuable and attractive. A location that hits critical mass enjoys a competitive geographic advantage over places that have yet to attract a signifi cant number of creative-class individuals.”
As a result, it’s a huge honor for me to do an interview with him. Yesterday he published the interview in The Atlantic Cities in an article titled What It Really Takes to Foster an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem.