Sixty years ago, Boston was a basket case, facing a bleak economic future. After peaking in the 1950s, the city's population collapsed. It was an almost catastrophic exodus, as 30 percent of its residents — wage-earners and tax payers — left, many of them to the suburbs.
Jump forward to today, and it's a dramatically different story: Boston in 2015 has the highest concentration of startup companies in America, it's at the center of the global biotech industry and it's home to a booming tourist trade and a red hot real estate market.
So, what explains this transformation? What brought Boston back from the brink? The Massachusetts Historical Society is exploring these questions in a series of discussions, beginning Wednesday, called "Transforming Boston: From Basket Case to Innovation Hub."
Tunney Lee, professor emeritus in urban studies and planning at MIT, and a former chief of planning and design at the Boston Redevelopment Authority.
David Luberoff, lecturer in sociology at Harvard and a senior project adviser at the Boston Area Research Initiative.
- "Sixty years ago, the city of Boston was not a tourist destination and residents were facing a bleak economic future. Boston’s heyday as a center of manufacturing passed decades before and the post-WWII exodus of wage earners and tax payers to the suburbs hit the city hard."
This segment aired on October 14, 2015.