mm308: Do you live in the right city?

MUDGE’s Musings

What I love about today’s electronified world is that you never know when and from where the next great thought is going to emerge, but you know darned well that it’s coming.


“Why the Place You Choose to Live is the Most Important Decision of Your Life,” by Richard Florida is today’s great thought. Here’s the first page of his presentation:

The Most Important Decision of Your Life

Increasingly, the place you choose to live will help determine your success in business, in finding a life partner, and in living a fulfilling life. In fact, it may be the most important decision of your life. I believe that we are in the beginnings of a shift as fundamental as the industrial revolution was over a century ago—one that will have as dramatic an impact on how people live and work. Furthermore, it will have a dramatic impact on where they live and work. Here’s why:

1. The world is moving to a creativity based economy. The places that succeed will be the ones that stay ahead of the curve and are able to adapt quickly.

2. This creative economy is based on creative people—not just artists and musicians, but engineers, scientists, architects, and educators. These are whom I call the creative class, people who work with their minds to create new things with value.

3. Creative people can live wherever they want. This means the creative economy is different from the older industrial or agricultural economies, where resources like iron or coal, or
location on trade routes, were what determined business location. The new resource is people, and they’re mobile.

4. Creative people cluster. They move to places where there are other creative people for them to interact with. For the past decade my work has been documenting this fact and analyzing where and why they move, and what factors lead to this clustering.

These four points were the basis of my book, The Rise of the Creative Class, which talked about these changes in the United States. My next book, Flight of the Creative Class, talked about these changes on a worldwide scale. This article, and my new book Who’s Your City?, explore these changes and what they mean for individuals.

We looked at the topic of cities and their ratings some months ago, courtesy of Fast Company. Here’s that link. Richard Florida slices and dices the data in a different way (the methodology as summarized is fascinating), and his list is intriguing.

He analyzed maps: population density, economic activity, commercial innovation (sources of patents issued) and scientific discovery. When all of his maps were overlayed, he found creative concentrations:

“about a dozen places in the U.S. and two or three dozen places worldwide that dominate the global economy.”

The thrust of Florida’s précis: if you’re young and looking for career opportunities, look to where the creative people are.

Okay, time to give you a chance to see the entire document for yourself.

Why the Place You Choose to Live is the Most Important Decision of Your Life

So, you creative types (and you know who you are), what are you waiting for? Join your creative peers, and shine.

It’s it for now. Thanks,


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