Council's battle plan to clean up city
(Express Advocate 25th April)
I quote extracts from their publicity release, but the full document is worth looking at, particularly the reference to Charles Landry and his concept of Creative Cities.
The application of his ideas to an Australian city, Perth, are even more useful.
First the quote, then a letter sent to the Express Advocate in an attempt to get people to read about, and consider, positive approaches to change.
"A new development paradigm is emerging that links the economy and culture, embracing economic, cultural, technological and social aspects of development at both the macro and micro levels. Central to the new paradigm is the fact that creativity, knowledge and access to information are increasingly recognized as powerful engines driving economic growth and promoting development in a globalizing world.
The Creative Economy Report is the first to present the perspectives of the United Nations as a whole on this exciting new topic. It provides empirical evidence that the creative industries are among the most dynamic emerging sectors in world trade. It also shows that the interface among creativity, culture, economics and technology, as expressed in the ability to create and circulate intellectual capital, has the potential to generate income, jobs and export earnings while at the same time contributing to social inclusion, cultural diversity and human development.
This Report addresses the challenge of assessing the creative economy with a view to informed policy-making by outlining the conceptual, institutional and policy framework in which this economy can flourish."
Now the letter to the editor, with apologies for the intemperate tone. Past letters that were reasonable and polite were not published, so a different tactic is being tried to get useful ideas out there. There is little evidence that local decision makers are aware of the strategies for urban renewal being successfully implemented in many cities around the world.
If you missed the alarming newspaper account of the Council meeting, you can check out what happened in the minutes on the Council website.
"Judging from newspaper reports of the Law and Order debate at last weeks Council meeting, it would seem that Vicki Scott’s was the only voice of sanity when she called for inclusiveness and social responsibility, against a chorus baying for the blood of scapegoats – groups politically vulnerable and already victims of various social exclusions. One gets the impression too many are singing only from the Chamber of Commerce song book.
If Council wants to ‘run-out-of-town’ any people deemed to be creating unacceptable problems, an uncharitable person would think some of our civic leaders might not be eligible, as residents, for re-election.
But to be charitable, I’m sure they want the problems solved, and I suspect that the answers lie in a different way of thinking; “A new development paradigm (that) is emerging that links the economy and culture, embracing economic, cultural, technological and social aspects of development at both the macro and micro levels.” (UN Creative Economy Report, April 2008)