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What Critics Get Wrong About the Creative Class and Economic Development

The Fall of the Creative Class? Not so fast.
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A recent article in the inaugural issue of Thirty Two magazine purports to undercut my theory of the creative class and economic development. With an attention-getting headline, "The Fall of the Creative Class," writer Frank Bures relates how he and his wife moved to Madison, Wisconsin, for a "variety of not-very-well-thought-out reasons," among them the fact that Madison had "been deemed a 'Cre­ative Class' strong­hold by Richard Florida, the prophet of pros­per­ous cool."

Bures’ article is framed around anecdotes about his and his wife’s misadventures in Madison and ultimate relocation to Minneapolis. While it makes for a compelling narrative, are we really to believe he upended his entire life on the basis of a book he is so evidently skeptical of? His own moves to creative class hotbeds, Madison and Minneapolis, seem to undercut his claim that "the migra­tion of cre­ative work­ers to places that are tol­er­ant, open and diverse—was sim­ply not happening."