CityLab's Richard Florida takes a look at the continued rise of the U.S.'s "creative class," a term which groups the nation's most progressive individualsin technology, knowledge, design, healthcare, law, and the arts. Considering the group accounts for a third of the country's workforce and about half of all wages and salaries, Florida thought it worthwhile to track its growth.
A troubling trend of the past decade had indicated a deepening economic divide between the "winners and losers" in a talent-driven knowledge economy. However, Florida's 2014 studies show that while the leading regions where the nation's most creative individuals are concentrated remain familiar, the "brain gain" has spread to new grounds, such as the Rustbelt and Sunbelt metros.
San Jose still tops the list, followed by D.C., Boston, and San Francisco. Hartford and Baltimore have both moved up a bit. Austin has moved down a bit. Seattle also remains on the list. Raleigh has fallen out of the top ten, while Minneapolis-St. Paul and Denver move onto the list. The good news is that some of the former losers in the talent game are the places where the creative class has grown the most. Las Vegas, which ranks dead last in the creative class, has seen the largest growth—a gain of more than 40%.