The Smart Growth Manifesto: Creative People Collaborating to Create Value

Umair Haque explicates “The Smart Growth Manifesto” and claims that “20th century growth was dumb” while “21st century economies will be powered by smart growth” where “dumb growth is unsustainable, unfair, and brittle, smart growth is sustainable, equitable, and resilient.”

He offers “four pillars of smart growth – for economies, communities, and corporations”:

  • Outcomes, not income: “Economics that measure financial numbers … often fail to be meaningful.” “It is tangible human outcomes that are the arbiters of authentic value creation.”
    Ultimately, it’s about Value!
  • Connections, not transactions: “It doesn’t just look at transactions … but looks at how local and global relationships power invention and innovation.” “Smart growth seeks to amplify connection and community — because the goal isn’t just to trade, but to co-create and collaborate.”
    Collaboration is essential!
  • People, not product: “Smart growth isn’t driven by pushing product, but by the skill, dedication, and creativity of people.” “Globalization driven by entrepreneurship, venture economies, and radical innovation.” “Smart growth isn’t powered by capital dully seeking the lowest-cost labour — but by giving labour the power to seek the capital with they can create, invent, and innovate the most.”
    People are essential!
  • Creativity, not productivity: “Creativity is what let us know that competition is creating new value, instead of just shifting old value around.” “Smart growth is creative — not merely productive.”
    Creativity is essential!

He concludes that the “four pillars of smart growth aren’t just design principles for next-generation economies: they’re also design principles for next-generation businesses” and that “getting smart is a better choice than staying dumb: smart growth results in more creativity, innovation, effectiveness, and power than dumb growth.”

Next-generation businesses are about Creative People sustainably, equitably, and resiliently Collaborating to create Value — the meaningfully-purposeful enterprise!


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