Inefficient Cities as Sources of New Work

As I continue with "The Economy of Cities" there have been a number of assertions that seemed relatively uncontroversial (what with my vast knowledge of development economics). However, there's no data in this book, that I've yet seen.

I've gotten to the point in the book where the author is contending that inefficient cities--those that are somewhat "organic" in their physical and economic layouts--are engines of innovation. The idea seems pretty reasonable: a number of small firms duplicating work (economically inefficient) and/or being lumped hurly-burly next-door to different pursuits, whether business, residential, or commercial (physically inefficient) may lead to new ways of doing work, new firms making new things, what have you.


Never Thought I'd See That in Print

I jussst started reading The Economy of Cities, by Jane Jacobs. Not fifteen pages in, this gem:
...factories in rural West Virginia employed local people who already knew how to sew and possibly even made their own underwear but this should not persuade us that therefore brassiere making developed from subsistence underwear making in West Virginia.
"Subsistence underwear making" is just hilarious. Like, there they are, barely scratching out their chemises and boxer-briefs.


Here you go.



Well, that went okay. I fear that my talk was pitched to the wrong
level, but a few people seemed to follow it and even enjoy it a bit.

I had something like fourteen one-half-hour interviews, as well as
lunching and dining with some of the people. Those all went very smoothly.

For someone with actual knowledge of that industry, it seems like it
would be a truly wonderful place.


San Jose

Going up tomorrow afternoon. I have a day of interviews there and will be giving a seminar on my research at a research unit of a well-known tech company. Somewhat nervous, but also not too bad, as I don't think a) there's a single chance in hell I'll get it, b) don't even really want it.

Still... advice?


Soren's Growth

Continuing apace