Exploring Multiculturalism as a Dynamic Factor for Spurring the New Economy, Particularly Present Within Port Cities


Parisi, L. and Eger, J. 2020. Exploring Multiculturalism as a Dynamic Factor for Spurring the New Economy, Particularly Present Within Port Cities. Urban and Regional Planning. 5 (4), pp. 114-121. https://doi.org/10.11648/j.urp.20200504.13
AuthorsParisi, L. and Eger, J.

Cities are widely recognized as the preferred places for cultural production and interactions, with their ability to agglomerate high-skilled workers and talented people, and to host services and knowledge infrastructures connected through formal and informal networks. They stand at the intersection points of both physical connections, including passenger travels and trade of goods and non-physical relations. The paper starts from the acknowledgment that innovation comes out as a consequence of these networks, triggering the economic growth and making cities attractive and competitive. It will then investigate the role of the human capital, as the current best productive asset, that acquires a new value in virtue of the social capital. The aim is to demonstrate that multiculturalism is an innovative, dynamic factor for development necessary for cities to thrive, that is particularly present within port cities. These nodes of transportation and relational networks, in fact, are embedded into several activities that go far beyond their boundaries and emerge as places of conflicts, but also of innovation and progress. In order to support the discussion, this contribution will explore the Innovation District of Boston as a significant case study, since, with its strong multiculturalism within a port environment that is deeply changing, the area is favoring the new economy of innovation. The results of the study will highlight the challenging character of stressing multiculturalism in a general climate of mistrust, intolerance and fear and will recognize the fact that in the era of the human capital there is an important element linked to connections, both physical (transportation links) and relational (social capital), that have the ability to transform the look of cities, opening up new opportunities to grow and use the human capital in unexpected ways. A set of possible future scenarios of policies will be proposed as well, considering the diversity added value and the prioritization of physical and relational connections.

JournalUrban and Regional Planning
Journal citation5 (4), pp. 114-121
PublisherScience Publishing Group
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Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.11648/j.urp.20200504.13
Publication dates
Online16 Dec 2020
Publication process dates
Accepted07 Dec 2020
Deposited12 Jan 2021
Copyright holder© 2020 The Authors
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