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  • Cities are using the arts to cultivate soft power and attract new residents
  • Cities are using the arts to cultivate soft power and attract new residents
    Thomas Hawk, Creative Commons (2013) ©
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What makes a city attractive?

It’s widely assumed that pragmatic elements, like a strong job or housing market, attract people to cities – but new studies show that vibrant cultural offerings, from galleries to club nights, are the real draw. How are lesser-known cities using creative clout to attract and retain residents?

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Though the 2012 Olympic Games were seen as a way of rejuvenating a poor part of London at speeds that defied ordinary budgets and planning regulations, sports journalist Matthew Engel observes that “old Olympic parks across the world are habitually forlorn: two weeks of glory, decades of rot.” [1][2] The city now hopes to circumvent that fate, raising £45 million in private investment and £141 million in public cash to bring the V&A Museum, Sadler’s Wells Theatre, and the London College of Fashion to the Olympic Park. [3][4] The hope that these ...

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