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The Creative City

Cultural policies and urban regeneration between conservation and development


Alessia Usai

This book focuses on the relationships between the creative city principles and the planning approach introduced by the European Landscape Convention in order to identify best practices for the development of innovative cultural policies and new urban regeneration tools.

The research is characterized by a cross-cutting approach to cultural heritage. It proposes a new model for the design of advanced cultural districts consisting of a benchmark methodology and a "toolbox" of spatial, economic and social indicators that can be used to build the necessary knowledge. Finally, having Sardinia Region (IT) as reference, the book offers a picture of programs and plans to which the methodology and the toolbox can be applied, outlining their potential impacts within cultural and spatial planning.

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1. The Concept of Creativity


The Concept of Creativity

Spatial Planning, Innovation and Culture

In the last thirty years, several disciplines have tried to define creativity in order to provide a solid foundation to economic theories inspired by this concept. In psychometrics and in cognitive psychology, creativity has been conceived as a set of acts, ideas or products which modify an already existing domain or generate a new one (Csikszentmihalyi, 1988, 1996). This definition introduced two relevant concepts for the economic and entrepreneurial world. Ideas, acts, and products need a circumscribed reference framework, like a market, and within it a social group creating demand and recognizing them as such in order to be created. From this point of view, the ‘creatives’ generally belong to that group of people who are able to recognize innovative ideas present in a certain domain, can make them theirs, and manage to cultivate them with little effort in order to re-sell them at a high price when a client recognizes their potential.

In the analysis of the reference framework different features of creativity (artistic, scientific, economic, and technologic) have been individuated (Amabile, 1983, 1998). At the same time, Torrence, Sternberg, and Lubart (1991) individuated six different elements which affect the creative’s choices. These factors are: personal predisposition (ability of analysis, synthesis, and manual abilities); the degree of knowledge of the domain; personal thought; motivation; personality; operational environment. The latter is particularly important to Sternberg (2006), who considers the context as a necessary and crucial...

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