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NYC, Tech-based ED and September 11

November 09, 2001

With disaster comes opportunity for dramatic changes to occur through the healing and rebuilding processes. Floods, hurricanes and tornados have helped to energize devastated areas into becoming more vibrant communities. The deep recession of the late 80s and restructuring of many key industrial sectors ushered in many state tech-based economic development programs, the benefits of which are being felt more than a decade later. 

In The Future of the Tech Savvy City, Joel Kotkin, a senior fellow at the Center for an Urban Future, argues that the need to rebuild New York City with the World Trade Center attacks and its aftermath can be the impetus to strengthen the city's position in a knowledge-based future. 

After explaining the importance of high tech, its positive and negative role in changing the cities, and the threat or challenges posed by aggressive "second tier" cities — all from the perspective of an urban geographer — Kotkin encourages New York and other large, older cities to pursue developing grassroots-driven economies based heavily on entrepreneurship, small business growth, "knowledge value neighborhoods," quality of life issues, and a strong, distinctive sense of place. 

Kotkin concludes, "In the end, cities, and most particularly New York, will prevail by becoming more decentralized and multi-polar, and fundamentally more human." 

The report is available for download from the Center for an Urban Future website:

http://www.nycfuture.org/econdev/futuretech.htm [expired]

New York