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How to create a creative city? The viewpoints of Richard Florida and Jane Jacobs

Gert‐Jan Hospers (Assistant Professor in Economics and Strategy at the University of Twente, The Netherlands (e‐mail:
Roy van Dalm (Dutch agent of the Richard Florida Creativity Group (e‐mail:


ISSN: 1463-6689

Article publication date: 1 August 2005




The paper aims to explore to what extent policy makers can create a “creative city”, that is, an urban environment capable of generating creativity, innovation and thus economic growth.


The paper is set up as an interview with Richard Florida and his mentor Jane Jacobs, two of today's most famous specialists on urban development.


The main conclusion from the double interview is that a creative city cannot be built from scratch; however, both Florida and Jacobs argue that it is still possible to build for the creative city.

Research limitations/implications

The paper documents the viewpoints of just two urban specialists whose original views, however, have influenced and will influence the debate on creative cities.

Practical implications

The interviewees in this paper offer illuminating insights and practical clues for policy makers wanting to contribute to the development of a creative city.


This is the first double interview with Florida and Jacobs offering policy advice in the field of creative cities. The paper also shows that the views of both authors are complementary.



Hospers, G. and van Dalm, R. (2005), "How to create a creative city? The viewpoints of Richard Florida and Jane Jacobs", Foresight, Vol. 7 No. 4, pp. 8-12.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited

Copyright © 2005, Emerald Group Publishing Limited

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