Richard Florida on Free Will

Today on Free Will on Bloggingheads TV, I chat with Richard Florida about his new book Who’s Your City: How the Creative Economy Is Making Where You Choose to Live the Most Important Decision of Your Life.

This is a really fascinating book and I highly recommend it. First of all, it’s really important to help people realize that where you live is important, that it is a choice, and you are responsible for it. Second, the importance of agglomeration to innovation and growth is I think one of the most interesting issues there is, and Florida does a great job of covering this work. But what I found most fascinating is new work Florida reports on that shows the relationship between place and happiness and place and personality. Did you know that extraverts are more likely to live in the midwest? That New York City is the capital of neuroticism? (Of yeah, you did!) That big coastal cities are most likely to be home to people high on openness to experience? Does your personality really fit the place you live? Fascinating stuff.

I read an early version of Who’s Your City about two years ago and told Richard it would be really interesting to see if there is a relationship between place and personality. I was completely blown away reading the finished book to see that there is in fact some good data on this and also by how far Richard is pushing it. I hope the book does well, and I’m betting it does.