The inventive city: Urban competitiveness and sustainable urban development
The analysis of urban economic development strategies of European cities,with specific attention for the role of creativity, innovation and knowledge inthose strategies.
Increasingly, academic researchers, consultants and policy-makers stress theimportance of creativity, innovation and knowledge for urban and regionalcompetitiveness. In response, an increasing amount of cities in Europe havedeveloped or are developing strategies to enhance their ‘creative knowledge’profile, both as a business location and as a living environment for creativetalent. But do such policies reach the target groups aimed for? Are theytargeting the right geographic scale level (region, city, or neighbourhood)? Anddo they really enhance a city’s or a region’s competitiveness?
The project is part of the Dutch national research programme ‘InnovativeSpace Use’, co-ordinated and funded by Habiforum. The project is co-financed bythe city of Amsterdam.
The researchers made an inventory of urban competitiveness policies in the 7cities, interviewed 10-15 local experts in each city and gathered relevantstatistical data on the extent to which the cities in our sample are or couldbecome competitive ‘creative knowledge cities’ and to what extent the currenturban development policies contribute to this economic profile.
Creative, knowledge-intensive and/or innovative segments of the economy offera promising perspective for many city-regions, especially in Europe, butprobably only a relatively small group of city-regions will become trulysuccessful in the ‘creative knowledge economy’. And even for those lucky few, itis probably wiser to create or maintain a broad and diversified economic basethan to specialise too much in sectors like the creative industries. Creativecity-regions can definitely not be created overnight; it is better to build onexisting traditions than to start from scratch.
Amsterdam institute for Metropolitan and International Development Studies (AMIDSt), University of Amsterdam
Mr M. Bontje
Marco Bontje, Sako Musterd (both University of Amsterdam), Simone Crok (Dept, of Research and Statistics, City of Amsterdam)
By: Bart Nijhof,