Start Up Cities: Event Looks At How Miami Can Get More Talent, Tolerance And Technology

Feb 12, 2013

During its inaugural program, Start-Up City: Miami will look at how tech hubs are taking root in Cities like Miami.
Credit Joe Mazzola/Flickr

A conference looking at how Miami can become a nebula for technology start-ups is taking place Wednesday at the New World Center on Miami Beach.

Called Start-Up City: Miami, the conference is in part the brain-child of urban studies expert Richard Florida who lives part-time in Miami Beach.

Florida is a senior editor at the Atlantic and runs an institute for the study of economic prosperity at the University of Toronto.

But Florida is best known for his 2002 book, Rise of the Creative Class, which talks about the importance of creative people—and their migration to urban centers—to our modern-day economy.

Florida says successful cities need three things, each starting with the letter T: talent, tolerance and technology.

It’s that last item on the list Florida says Miami really needs to work on.

“We have arts and culture, we have urban transformation in South beach, in Miami Beach, in the Design District, in Brickell in Wynwood and downtown Miami,” said Florida. “And could we leverage Miami’s urban transformation, its on going artist and cultural transformation as a source of innovation and new technology start-ups."

Florida wants Miami to become more than a vacation town, he wants Miami to become what he calls an idea capital. Like Art Basel helped awaken Miami’s arts scene, Florida hopes events like Start-Up Cities will kick start the city’s technology industry—think a mini Silicon Valley in Wynwood.

Start-Up City: Miami takes place from 8:30 AM until 4:00 PM Wednesday, February 13 at the New World Center in Miami Beach.

Speakers range from AOL co-founder Steve Case to the Dean of University of Miami School of Architecture Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk to former mayor of Miami, Manny Diaz.