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Seeking Talent for Creative Cities

Seeking Talent for Creative Cities: The Social Dynamics of Innovation

  • Book Info
    Seeking Talent for Creative Cities
    Book Description:

    Seeking Talent for Creative Citiesrepresents a rigorously empirical test of popular wisdom on the true relationship between urban development and economic competitiveness.

    eISBN: 978-1-4426-6793-8
    Subjects: Sociology, Political Science, Economics

Table of Contents

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  1. Front Matter
    (pp. i-iv)
  2. Table of Contents
    (pp. v-vi)
  3. List of Tables
    (pp. vii-vii)
  4. List of Figures
    (pp. viii-viii)
  5. Foreword to the Series
    (pp. ix-xiv)
    David A. Wolfe

    Innovation and creative capacity are essential determinants of economic prosperity in a globalizing, knowledge-based economy. Although the process of globalization has led to numerous predictions of the “death of distance,” growing evidence suggests that the contemporary global economy make cities more – not less – important as sites of production, distribution, and innovation. Over the past decade, recognition has grown that even the most global of economic activities remain fundamentally rooted in city-regions as critical sites for organizing economic activity. More significantly, the social dynamics of city-regions are crucial in shaping economic outcomes (Gertler 2001).

    The interactive and social nature of the...

  6. Preface
    (pp. xv-xx)
    Jill L. Grant
  7. Acknowledgments
    (pp. xxi-xxii)
  8. Part I: Seeking Talent for Innovation

    • 1 Attracting and Retaining Talent: Evidence from Canada’s City-Regions
      (pp. 3-30)

      Within the last decade, there has been widespread recognition that intangible assets such as knowledge and creativity are the primary drivers of competitive economic success (Maskell and Malmberg 1999). As creative and science-based industries have become among the most dynamic and propulsive forms of economic activity within city-regions, human capital and its ability to innovate is increasingly viewed as a primary factor shaping the geography of economic activity. The highly educated and creative workers who direct this economic activity tend to be geographically clustered, yet potentially mobile, leading city-regions to seek to attract and retain this talent for their economic...

    • 2 Attracting and Retaining Talent in Canadian Cities: Towards a Holistic View?
      (pp. 31-56)

      In the contemporary global economy, knowledge and human capital (or talent) are viewed as paramount for economic competitiveness and success. However, the geography of talent is highly variegated and scholars have suggested that cities tend to be places where human capital accumulates and concentrates (Glaeser and Mare 2001; Florida 2002c; Scott 2008; Storper and Scott 2009). Emerging from this line of thought is the notion that the capacity of city-regions to attract and retain highly qualified and skilled personnel is therefore critical to securing the future prosperity of local and national economies. Such thinking has been rapidly translated into public...

  9. Part II: Attracting Creative Sector Workers

    • 3 Cosmopolitanism, Cultural Diversity, and Inclusion: Attracting and Retaining Artistic Talent in Toronto
      (pp. 59-76)

      In recent years, there has been growing recognition that the economic performance of a city-region is related to quality-of-place characteristics. While production networks and employment opportunities are of critical importance in attracting and retaining talent, Florida (2002) suggests that workers are also attracted to cities offering a range of amenities. In this paper we examine the role of cultural diversity, social inclusion, and tolerance in attracting and retaining artists. We consider the extent to which members of disadvantaged social groups are able to participate fully in the city’s creative economy, and the role that institutions, policies, and practices play in...

    • 4 Screenwriters in Toronto: Centre, Periphery, and Exclusionary Networks in Canadian Screen Storytelling
      (pp. 77-98)

      A narrative across several scholarly literatures casts post-industrial creative workers as highly footloose, enjoying wide freedom to earn a living through self-expression, with abundant opportunities for lucrative short-term employment in various attractive metropolitan centres. This narrative is expressed notably in creative class theory (Florida 2002), creative city theory (Montgomery 2007), and in the strands of creative economy theory that foreground creative labour’s self-expressive, selfmanaged, and self-creative attributes (Leadbeater 1999).

      Screenwriters conform to the generic portrait of the creative worker in the sense that they are mainly well-educated individuals who are drawn to large, culturally important urban centres to earn their...

    • 5 Satisfaction Guaranteed? Individual Preferences, Experiences, and Mobility
      (pp. 99-118)

      As individuals become responsible for constructing their own biographies and decision making becomes more complex, social scientists endeavour to understand the factors that motivate specific choices. In geography as a discipline, the last decade has witnessed a growing fascination with the locational choices of individuals with high levels of human capital and mobility. Identifying the factors that attract and retain talent has become an important research agenda and one that has produced a robust yet contradictory body of literature. Two camps have emerged. On the one hand, Storper and Scott (2009) argue that good-quality jobs must be present before talent...

    • 6 “Those Hermit Artists”: Musical Talent on the Edge of the Continent
      (pp. 119-138)

      Over the last decade, the ideas of Richard Florida (2002c, 2005a, 2005b) have had an immense influence on local development policy across North America. Florida has suggested that in the new economy, growth depends on cities’ abilities to attract talented and creative workers. In an economy reliant on high levels of education and knowledge, Florida holds, talented workers can choose where they want to live and work. Florida (2002a) argues that talented and creative workers are attracted by tolerance, as measured by diversity (race, sexual orientation, and ethnicity). He proposes rating places by a coolness index that includes measures for...

  10. Part III: Attracting High-Technology Workers

    • 7 Attracting Knowledge Workers and the Creative City Paradigm: Can We Plan for Talent in Montreal?
      (pp. 141-158)

      In this chapter, we anticipate some consequences of implementing the creative city paradigm in urban planning practice to attract talent. The paper reports on the results of research on factors influencing the attraction and retention of junior knowledge workers – students in science and technology professions – in Montreal. There are three main sections. First, we define the creative city paradigm based on the most recent literature on the subject. We draw on the creative class thesis to explain that the debate also concerns urban regeneration. Next, we summarize our findings on factors influencing the mobility of junior knowledge workers in Montreal;...

    • 8 Talent, Tolerance, and Community in Saskatoon
      (pp. 159-177)

      There is a hot debate in academic and policy circles about the emerging hypothesis that the social dynamics of city-regions constitute the foundations of economic success in the global economy. While the literature hypothesizes that three dimensions – that is, the social nature of the innovation process; the social foundations of talent attraction, integration, and retention; and the degree of social inclusion and civic engagement – work in tandem to drive development at the local level, the purpose of this chapter is to examine the characteristics and features of the Saskatoon city-region that prove to be salient to talented and creative workers....

    • 9 Exploring “Creative” Talent in a Natural Resource–Based Centre: The Case of Calgary
      (pp. 178-198)

      Attracting and retaining talent is touted as a key factor for success in innovation systems from the level of the industrial cluster (Wolfe and Gertler 2003; Breschi and Malerba 2001; Maskell and Malmberg 1999), to the regional system (Florida 2002a, 2002b, 2002c, 2005; Cooke et al. 1997; Cooke and Leydesdorff 2006), to national systems (Freeman 1995; Lundvall 1992), and to global centres of excellence (Mahroum 2000a, 2000b, 2005). Innovation studies presume that talent, either generated individually or through teams, is the source of the creative activities that lead to innovation. In addition, past ISRN-related studies (e.g., Langford et al. 2003;...

  11. Part IV: Seeking Talent for Small Cities

    • 10 Kingston and St John’s: The Role of Relative Location in Talent Attraction and Retention
      (pp. 201-218)

      This chapter explores two related questions: What factors most strongly influence Canada’s talented and creative workers – the mobile potential residents who contribute to city-region economies – to settle in particular cities? What particular characteristics or features of city-regions prove salient to the talented and creative workers who have decided to move there? In answering these questions, we make a theoretical argument based on empirical evidence from studies of Kingston, Ontario, and St John’s, Newfoundland, two Canadian city-regions with similar population sizes and levels of ethno-racial diversity.

      Advocates of creative class theory claim that the location decisions of the creative class are...

    • 11 Small Cities as Talent Accelerators: Talent Mobility and Knowledge Flows in Moncton
      (pp. 219-240)

      In less than a decade, Richard Florida’sRise of the creative class(2002) has ignited debates that have swept across the social sciences. At the core, Florida’s arguments (2002, 2005, 2008) are that creative and technology-producing industries are the main drivers of the contemporary economy, and they grow and thrive most where creative and highly skilled workers cluster. Find what attracts this creative class of workers, and a city can become a magnet for creative and technological industries. What attracts these creative, knowledge workers, Florida further argues, are vibrant, diverse cities that provide a variety of cultural amenities and experiences....

  12. Part V: Innovating in Talent Attraction

    • 12 What Does the Creative Class Approach Add to the Study of Talent, Creativity, and Innovation in Canadian City-Regions?
      (pp. 243-256)

      A decade after the publication of his seminal bookThe rise of the creative class, Richard Florida’s (2002) major contributions can be summarized in three key points.

      1 He brought urbanization economies – especially Jane Jacobs’s (1969) emphasis that diversity in the urban environment stimulates creativity – back on the scene after a decade in which localization economies promoted by Porter’s (1990, 1998) cluster approach and Krugman’s (1998) new economic geography had dominated.

      2 He transcended the understanding of human capital by adding the concept of creative capital, thereby arguing that the economy depends on inputs from a creative class that includes...

  13. Appendix A: Draft Interview Guide
    (pp. 257-260)
  14. Contributors
    (pp. 261-265)