Last week’s comments by Miami Beach Mayor Phillip Levine thrust Miami’s tech scene into the national spotlight for all the wrong reasons. Turns out Miami’s nascent start-up and tech base is alive and well, and many people quickly came to its defense.
Examples are everywhere – at Venture Hive, the UM Life Science and Technology Park and Pipeline Brickell, just to name a few.
The next step in our city’s evolution as a tech hub is to gradually (and systemically) consolidate our diffuse tech sector at a select few choice locations and facilities.
This was the prescription offered up by a delegation from Boston’s Cambridge Innovation Center (CIC) while touring Miami last week. They have street cred on the topic; founded 15 years ago, the CIC is today regarded as one of the world’s most successful clusters for start-ups and early-stage technology companies.
Their advice: identify two or three hubs that lend themselves to concentrated start-up activity and enlist the support of public and private sector partners capable of pumping investment into those sites. No matter the location, the scene needs to be organic and evoke an emotional vibe.
Once a few influential early-adopters are in place, the larger community will follow.
This is the model that’s proven effective in Boston – and it may be the clearest path to success in Miami as well.