Boston, Cambridge officials to set aside bickering and discuss how to retain world-class tech talent
City councilors from both cities are planning a joint hearing, with the World Class Cities Partnership (yes, that's a thing), to talk about ways of encouraging our smart people to stay here.
Councilors Tito Jackson (Roxbury) and Leland Cheung (Cambridge) are spearheading the effort. In 2010, Cheung and Boston City Councilor Mike Ross organized a similar session (held at the Museum of Science, which straddles the border), but then relations chilled, in part because of that whole Vertex thing. Also, some Cambridge councilors fretted Tom Menino would steal their secrets.
In a statement, Jackson says it's time to put such pettiness in the past:
Boston and Cambridge are linked historically, culturally and economically. This effort marks an important step in these cities' relationship as we move further into the global and technologically-driven 21st century. Developing job growth and technological enhancement together will only help these cities function as an economic unit.
In his own statement, Cheung agreed:
The intellectual, moral, and cultural climates of Cambridge and Boston are constantly evolving as a result of the ideas, passions, and innovations of our student population," said Councillor Leland Cheung. "It is essential that the City of Cambridge and the City of Boston work collaboratively to ensure that graduates of our colleges and universities feel confident that the Commonwealth is a place where they will be able to grow and thrive.
World Class Cities Partnership is a think tank at Northeastern aimed at promoting "cultural understanding and economic continuity between the Greater Boston area and the world.
A date and location for the hearing will be announced at a later date.