Here is a video recording of a recent panel discussion on cities. I found all of the panel participants worth listening to. But when Paul Romer participates, he outdistances the others. He talks here about his Charter Cities project which has much to recommend it, and esepcially his work in Honduras.
I liked Romer's discussion of start-ups in business. The big established firms do miss the boat many times and this creates a role for start-up firms. Why not start-up cities for the same reasons?
Romer's remarks come on the heels of Geoffrey West's panel presentation, featuring his finding on scale economies in cities. What better rejoinder than to discuss the phenomenon of start-ups. The cities we have may not be able to innovate -- for all sorts of economic and political reasons. All the more reason for start-up cities.