Governance as Technology: How to Grow a City in Honduras, Part I

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Honduras is one of the poorest countries in Latin America. It
has the highest murder rate in the world, almost double the next
closest contender. It’s a place ravaged by the illegal drug trade
and political instability. As recently as 2009 the military ousted
a president pushing to modify the constitution in order to extend
his own term. It may seem like the last place on earth where
businesses would want to invest, or where people would want to
move. But there’s a new idea about to be tried in Honduras.Some call it a Startup City or Free City, others a LEAP Zone,
and in Honduran law it’s known as a ZEDE. They are politically
autonomous, privately run zones that supporters believe could
transform not only Honduras, but the entire developing world.In “Governance as Technology,” the first episode in a four-part
series, a couple of the key players behind the ideas animating this
project explain the specifics of the Honduran plan and the broader
philosophy behind the “startup city” movement. There’s Zachary
Caceres, a young man who moved from the U.S. to Guatemala to
run the Startup Cities Institute and who says that bringing the
same “entrepreneurial process of trial-and-error to social tech
that we already know works in physical tech” is essential to
lifting the developing world out of poverty. And there’s seasoned
reformer and ex-Reagan speechwriter Mark Klugmann, who sits on the
board responsible for greenlighting the zones in Honduras and who
believes that this project could “demonstrate inside of Honduras
and to the world that the capacity for solving problems and for
creating jobs in particular could go forward with a velocity that
few have been expecting.”Watch the video above, and check out the rest of the series
here.
Part II explores
already existing examples of experimental governance in Honduras,
including entire towns commissioned and governed by private
companies. Part III
delves into the history of the Honduran ZEDEs and highlights both
past and current criticism of the project. And
Part IV looks forward
with some entrepreneurs who’ve already sketched out business plans
for what they hope will be one of the first Honduran startup
cities. Or, watch the whole thing here:Download Video as MP4Approximately 5 minutes. Produced by Zach Weissmueller and Ross
Kenyon. Edited by Weissmueller. Music by Chris Zabriskie.Click the buttons below for downloadable versions of this video,
and don’t forget to subscribe to Reason TV’s Youtube
channel for more content like this. This project was
co-produced with the Moving
Picture Institute.
Video provided by Reason TV
Producer : Reason TV

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