Culture + Creativity

DTOne-of-a-Kind: A Creator Culture

Authored by: Jamie Kruger
September 13, 2022

Paul Saffo, a well-known futurist, was the first to acknowledge the creator culture in his essay, “Get Ready for a New Economic Era,” published in the McKinsey Quarterly dated February 26, 2009. Saffo stated that we are now entering a new economic era called the “creator economy,” made possible largely by the Internet, which is democratizing how we interact and connect. 

The creator culture is the basis of this new creative economy and empowers everyday people by harnessing the human capacity to create. Makers learn, build, and work together in their communities to produce homegrown products and experiences that provide a sense of place and connectedness. People, in turn, can observe these things being created within their communities and feel proud to support local, one-of-a-kind resources. 

Makers are not new to Orlando. They exist within downtown Orlando and its surrounding areas. Our vision includes the expansion and growth of these creators: our burgeoning arts community, simmering food culture, and core of start-up companies, business incubators, and technology firms. Education enables the creator culture to thrive. Orlando Tech Association is committed to “maker” education. Orlando is also home to The Maker Effect Foundation, which “exists to activate and amplify the efforts of makers” in Central Florida3. 

We will grow our creator culture by: 

  • Developing creator districts that embrace and identify with music, theater, galleries, and other cultural expressions and provide festivals, destination locales, retail, and affordable live/work opportunities. 
  • Making downtown a work of art and encouraging diverse forms of art expression such as murals and pop-up performances. 
  • Incentivizing and supporting culture builders. 
  • Giving our local talent a reason to choose downtown to make and create. 
  • Making downtown Orlando more recognized and identifiable as a place for entrepreneurship– a Create City. 

View the entire Project DTO Vision Plan

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