Debunking Richard Florida

Richard Florida has been getting a lot of props, even in the Museum, especially since his visit to Sydney in 2003. I guess he has an appeal to us similarly middle-class creatives. Of course it helps that he rates Sydney as one of the ‘creative’ cities. But here’s a debunking of Florida from the New Republic.

These myths are particularly problematic when they become the basis for policy. And in many cities, that is exactly what is happening. Policies based on these myths aren’t just a waste of time and resources. They are also distracting cities from the real work of securing their future. After all, if you are being told that you are coming back–riding the wave of demographics and intelligence to an inevitably positive outcome–why deal with the hard issues like public education, job training, promoting small companies, and transportation?

The American metropolis can be more than a way station for the wealthy young and part-time destination for the nomadic rich. It can be a place where average people live, thrive, and build communities across lines of race and class.