I’ve always been a city person. So I was heartened to read that my hometown, Chicago, has reversed 50 years of population decline. Although census details are still to come in, Boston, Seattle and Denver are also expected to record population growth.
As I’ve noted before, cities are the great economic engines of the world, both in advanced nations and in the developing economies. For a while, this was an unfashionable viewpoint, but influential thinkers like Michael Porter and Rosabeth Moss Kanter have been singing urban praises for the last few years.
The one dark sign on the horizon is what I anticipate will be something between indifference and antipathy from the Bush administration towards cities. In the near-deadlocked 2000 election, one of the most dramatic gaps (along with the gender gap) was that between urban and suburban areas. I can’t see the Bush administration spending much time on something so far from their electoral heartland.