Richard Florida is now writing in the Globe and Mail. I enjoy his blog very much but confess to never having read his very successful books. The column seems worth a look:
Clunky sounding or not, mega-regions are the real economic engines of the global economy. The 10 largest account for 43 per cent of the planet’s economic activity and more than half of its patented innovations and star scientists who generate pioneering breakthroughs, while housing only 6.5 per cent of its population. The top 40 produce 66 per cent of the world’s economic activity and more than eight in 10 of its patented innovations and most-cited scientists, while being home to just 18 per cent of the world’s population. All of this convinces me that place, not statehood, is the central axis of our time and of our global economy.
Quite right. Florida and I, along with others such as John Kay, Martin Wolf and Robert Lucas, are huge fans of the late Jane Jacobs, who pointed all this out long ago. Anyone who has not read Jacobs is missing a treat. Start with "Cities and the Wealth of Nations".