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Start-up City: Miami to bring national and local experts together for day-long event

Posted on January 15, 2013

 

Published by The Miami Herald

Next month,  The Atlantic will launch Start-Up City: Miami, the inaugural event in a new series of day-long programs exploring the emerging models of “urban tech” taking root in cities around the world. The free event, produced in partnership with the Creative Class Group and the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, will be Feb. 13 at the New World Center in Miami Beach, conference organizers announced Tuesday.

Start-Up City: Miami will explore short- and long-term strategies to attract entrepreneurs and start-ups. “This conference is completely unique. It’s designed to both showcase and deepen Miami’s ongoing urban transformation and learn what it takes to evolve from arts and culture based transformation to technology transformation,” said Richard Florida, an urban studies expert, author and Atlantic senior editor who is spearheading and curating the conference.

The program will bring together leading voices in the urban planning and community building arenas, including Tony Hsieh, Zappos founder and CEO who has been deeply involved in Las Vegas’ start-up ecosystem, Steve Case, chairman of the Start-up America Partnership and founder of AOL; and Brad Feld, a TechStars founder and author of  Start-Up Communities: Building an Entrepreneurial Ecosystem in Your City.

“Part of our strategy is providing compelling convenings for people and strong opportunities to connect and to learn,” said Matt Haggman, the Knight Foundation’s Miami program director. “I’ve been talking to Richard Florida for some time about doing a one-day conference focusing on Miami and all the different things that have come together to make this a really promising moment for the startup community in Miami to really make some big strides. … I think it is going to be a really compelling, interesting, thought provoking day-long conversation.”

Local speakers and panelists include Manny Medina, founder of Terremark and an investor who is developing a major tech conference for South Florida; Adriana Cisneros, vice chairman of the board and director of strategy for the Cisneros Group of Companies; Susan Amat, executive director of The Launch Pad at the University of Miami and founder of Launch Pad Tech; Juan Pablo Cappello, attorney, co-founder of idea.me and investor; former Miami Mayor Manny Diaz; Elizabeth Plater-Zyberk, dean of the School of Architecture at the University of Miami and urban design expert; and about a dozen others.

“Great global cities are more than real estate and arts and  culture, fun and lifestyle. From London and Paris to New York and San Francisco, great global cities are idea capitals,” Florida said. “The conference is one small step in this direction and we hope to build from it over time toward something like the broader ideas conference for entrepreneurs, urban transformers, city-builders, place-makers and all those with a stake in a startup city.