Mobility Creativity Nexus

Event Date

Buehler Alumni Center | AGR Hall | UC Davis

This one-day conference will look at the role of mobility in creativity as an economic driver and creativity as a disruptive force driving both planned and unplanned mobility.

Since the late 1700s, to be truly “mobile” is to be creative as a quality of mind; to be creative, one must be willing to be mobile of mind and typically of body as well. Current policies and research also reflect these long-standing linkages, from Education Abroad Programs, to special visas for the highly skilled, to urban and state development strategies based on the attraction of a 'creative class’ and the creative possibilities of cultural diversity.

All of these scenarios involving individuals, markets, and institutional actors, share an orientation of having to imagine possible futures, take creative action which is not part of an existing menu, and learn and adapt from these processes in a dynamic environment.

This conference will provide a wide-ranging set of views from invited distinguished academic, policy and business leaders who will share their critical perspectives on this linkage and its role, past, present, and future. We will draw some connections and conclusions regarding the state of this connection and its potential for positive contributions in California, the US and the World, including both direct and indirect policies and trends affecting it.




Robert Feenstra, Associate Dean, Division of Social Sciences and C. Brian Cameron Distinguished Chair in International Economics, UC Davis

9:00 - 11:30AM  SESSION 1

Mobility and Creativity: Explorations in Time and Space
What are the historical and contemporary connections between the concepts of mobility and creativity? What are the theoretical and empirical linkages that have been made or will need to be made in the 21st Century?

David Kyle, Professor, UC Davis, Sociology
          Mind and Mobility: The Mobility-Creativity Nexus
Jennifer Hunt, James Cullen Chair, Rutgers University, Economics
          Migration and Technological Innovation
Natasha Iskander, Associate Professor, New York University, Public Policy
          Creative License: Political Rights and the Link Between Mobility and Creativity
Victor Narro, Project Director, UCLA, Labor Center
          Spirituality, Creative Mindfulness Practice and Transnational Solidarity

11:30AM – 12:00PM  BREAK

12:00 – 1:00PM  LUNCH TALK

Innovating a new Standard in American Dining
Saru Jayaraman, Director, UC Berkeley, Center for Labor Research and Education

1:00 – 3:00PM  SESSION II

Who Moved the Box? Science, Education, Business, and Development
What are the institutions conducive to mobility-creativity? How to best regulate Intellectual property rights? What is the role of Universities? Corporations?

Mario Biagioli, Distinguished Professor, UC Davis, School of Law
          The Mobility-Creativity Nexus: Cautionary Tales from Science and Technology Studies
Fred Block, Professor, UC Davis, Sociology
          The Hidden Role of Mobility in the Innovation System
Anupam Chander, Professor, UC Davis, School of Law
          H1Bs and International Trade Law: The Indian Complaint Against the U.S.
Todd Schulte, President,
          Immigration, Innovation and Election 2016 

3:00 – 3:15PM  BREAK

3:15 – 5:30PM  SESSION III

Creative Cities, Creative Mobility and Economic Growth
Combining creativity and mobility in science, economics and Business creates agglomeration, growth and development forces.

Enrico Moretti, Professor, UC Berkeley, Economics
          The New Geography of Jobs
Giovanni Peri, Chair, UC Davis, Economics
          Foreign Skills, Foreign students and the Growth of US cities
Anna Lee Saxenian, Dean, UC Berkeley, School of Information
          International Mobility of Talent: Global Search and Local InstitutionBuilding
Michael Storper, Professor, UCLA, School of Public Affairs
          Is Migration the Chicken or the Egg of Creative Economic Development? Lessons from Los Angeles and San Francisco


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