Precisely at the moment of change, when cities need to be inventive, the rise of a risk culture limits potential. Every risk management policy should be renamed 'risk and opportunity policy' to ensure both sides of risk are explored. This means moving from a climate of 'no, because' to one of 'yes, if'. Allied to this move should be incentives to encourage and validate imaginative thinking. For instance embedding criteria for innovation and creative capacity as part of annual job performance assessments and as a requirement in job applications. Moving forward requires a focus on the spirit of most guidelines, rules or laws and not on the letter of the law, which usually constrains. This requires leadership from the top, from the bottom and right through the middle. Top leaders need to symbolically 'give permission' so that the trapped potential of others lower down the hierarchy and of the city is unleashed. There are many potential leaders waiting in the wings.
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