Tuesday, 13 August 2013


Here’s your invitation to tomorrow night’s session at the Auckland Uni Economics Group…

Hi everyone,
In 2010, the Harvard Business Review listed Paul Romer’s theory of Charter Cities as one of its top ten breakthrough ideas. As such, we are excited to be having along a local expert in Charter Cities, Ben Gussen, to speak to us about this topic on Thursday evening.
    The idea of Charter Cities is like a larger version of “skunkworks.” used to show an organisation whether an idea is workable or not. Hong Kong, for example, could be seen as the skunkworks of China, showing Chinese leaders how to proceed on economic development in mainland China.
    Romer’s vision is that creating cities similar to Hong Kong, with its new rules, would help the economic development in many less developed countries. Local administration of such cities would be entrusted to countries like Canada, similar to the role played by the British government in Hong Kong, reducing the political risk of a policy reversal by the host country. Charter cities could be the skunkworks that bring systemic change to entire nations.
    This week’s guest speaker, Ben Gussen, will discuss Romer’s concept of Charter Cities from a more historical point of view, arguing that sovereign cities have been the eyes of economies since the dawn of time. The writings of the likes of Peter Kropotkin, Lewis Mumford, Murray Bookchin, Kenneth Boulding, Ernst F. Schmacher, Jane Jacobs, Leopold Kohr, and even Aristotle attest to the importance of the sovereign city in the economic development of countries.
    As usual, all are welcome to attend. We look forward to seeing you there.

When & Where:
       Date: Thursday, 15 August
        Time: 6pm-7pm
        Location: Room 215, Level Two, University of Auckland Business School (OGGB)

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