A healthy economy needs qualified professionals. Towns and regions have already realised this, and begun competing for skilled workers. But where exactly should action be taken? Where should regional measures kick in?
Richard Florida, an economist, has developed a theory called "creative class", which offers an approach here. His theory: human creativity is a decisive factor for the economic success of a region. This begins in towns: here, people from all different background come into contact with each other, share their ideas and start to experiment.
"Jobs follow people"
People belonging to the creative class can be found in all occupations. The decisive factor is their creative output, and the innovations which result. Where qualified professionals are at work, the economy will be prepared to invest.
To analyse the attractiveness and potential of a region, Florida developed the TTT index: technology, talent and tolerance attract the creative class. Research institutions, universities and an open atmosphere are regarded as excellent preconditions.
agiplan study supplies a benchmark for the creative class
In its study "The creative class in Germany", agiplan has calculated the TTT index for all independent towns and municipalities in Germany. For the first time ever, a "gay index" was also generated, forming part of the index on tolerance. With this study, agiplan offers a benchmark which enables towns and municipalities to assess how competitive they are with regard to the creative class.
The study has shown that there is a correlation between a high score on the TTT index and a good socio-economic situation (high GDP per capita, and relatively low level of unemployment). A number of pilot projects show how the findings from this study can be utilised in practice.