Don’t Flatten the Curve on Urban Innovation

My list


Over the past year, cities have been the source of an extraordinary amount of innovation borne out of crisis — local leaders transformed hundreds of miles of streets and civic spaces, mobilized food-delivery systems, passed eviction moratoriums and procured PPE from every corner of the world in order to protect first responders.

That’s because, as Richard Florida and Carlo Ratti recently observed, the pandemic left city leaders “with little choice but to adopt a fast-paced, trial-and-error approach.” In other words, mayors innovated as if their residents’ lives and livelihoods depended on it — because they did.

But as Covid caseloads, thankfully, begin to fall and the existential crisis starts to fade, I’m now concerned that cities might flatten the curve on bold, public-sector innovation — just when we need it more than ever.

+INFO: Bloomberg

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