It has been known for some time that cities are fertile ground for new ideas, economic dynamics, and entrepreneurial start-ups. People from different fields find the perfect opportunity to talk to each other, maintain relationships and exchange ideas. This exchange of knowledge and creativity automatically leads to the creation of new businesses.
Researchers such as sociologist Richard Florida recently called for the promotion of certain urban amenities, including cafes and restaurants, to boost the creative sector. They argue that these facilities foster a diverse and tolerant urban culture. This urban dynamic is particularly attractive to the creative class and venture capital.
Meeting places outside the home and work
Targeted urban policy requires more insight into the attractiveness of Third placesMeeting places outside the home and work, when entrepreneurs start. Li Fang (Florida State University), Femi Adelakun (City78), and Theo Goetemann (Basil Labs) have investigated the factors that determine the success of these creative urban incubators. To do this, they specifically analyzed the relationship between the presence of startups and coffee shops.
The study focused on Maryland, one of the most entrepreneurial states in the United States. Through Google reviews, the researchers collected relevant data about the quality of services (food, drinks, service), the quality of space and the accessibility of the site. Based on the results obtained from Google reviews, they get an idea of customer satisfaction in the various components.
The researchers located the startups and coffee shops based on official company data and, for coffee shops, Points of Interest (POIs) on Google Maps. Based on text analysis, they searched nearly 80,000 reviews of 940 coffee shops on Google Reviews. The use of terms such as ‘conversation’, ‘talk’, ‘conversation’ and ‘discussion’ refers to a relatively large number of business meetings in organizations.
The link between coffee shops and startups
Using this data, the researchers wanted to establish a causal relationship between startups and coffee shops. And it turns out: startups are on average 447 meters closer to the nearest coffee shop than existing companies and 398 meters closer to the three nearest coffee shops. For every mile a company approaches the three nearest coffee shops, there is a 10.1% greater chance of it being a startup.
Researchers have identified four possible explanations for the relationship between startups and coffee shops:
- wrong relationship: Attractive websites are simply interesting to both startups and coffee shops.
- Reverse causation: Cafes are settling into an entrepreneurial environment.
- to chooseEntrepreneurs are drawn to the lifestyle that comes with a coffee shop.
- true causationCafés satisfy the need for interaction, and ideas and entrepreneurship emanate from it.
“Wrong relationship” is not relevant to finding a causal relationship. According to the research, there is little or no evidence of a reverse causal relationship. The “selection” factor may indicate a causal relationship, but researchers have found very little evidence to support this.
Careful analysis of the specific terms that appeared in Google Ratings, such as “business” and “business”, support their suspicion of a “true” causal relationship, with a coffee shop an ideal place for ideas and entrepreneurship.
3rd place motivation
Fang, Adlacon and Gutiman discuss a more focused urban policy to promote the development of Third places to stimulate. To this end, cities should in any case allow more flexibility in the design of public spaces. Strict legislation and regulations often hamper diversified urban area planning. More flexibility in the design of public spaces and buildings makes the development of Third places more attractive.
Researchers stress the importance of the current audience Third placesLike libraries and parks. Renovation of old and decaying buildings gives a huge boost to public life and gives creative and entrepreneurial activities a Strengthen†
Social entrepreneurs deserve support and support when starting in urban areas Third places High quality, the researchers argue. Many entrepreneurs start their businesses out of a social motive. Officials and planners can also play an important role in this, for example by improving walking routes and public transport accessibility.
urban owners Third places Their employees benefit from events and programs to further stimulate communication between entrepreneurs. Research by Fang, Adelacon and Guttmann shows that this is an important task for cafes, which often feel associated with this urban entrepreneurship. We also welcome training programs from the municipality here.
The researchers believe planners and city authorities should continue to look for improvements to the built environment. The three attractive places represent great economic value, ensure closer social ties and contribute to the reduction of crime. Moreover, they constitute an inexhaustible source of knowledge, creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship.