In a society, cities are the centers of human interactions, creativity, knowledge, diversity, culture, commerce and economic creativity. Owing to the importance of innovation, knowledge acquisition, and the increased recognition by the government in Iran, many cities have developed strategies and implemented programs to improve their ‘innovative milieus’ and to attract ‘creative people’ in creative industries in order to aid the restructuring and growth of their economy. This paper is a case study serving as a contribution to the current research in the field of small cities, with a focus on the city of Meybod, Yazd. The research examines the factors affecting the attraction and retention of creative people and creative businesses in Meybod, based on the data collected from the Statistical Center of Iran, the management and planning organization of Yazd province, government reports, and key informant interviews. The findings reveal that the attraction of creative people and creative businesses is a complex process. Affordability and livability turned out as the primary drivers of attraction, supported by specific qualities of community and place. Small regional cities exhibit unique inherent characteristics that can attract creative people. It is a key task for governments to leverage such characteristics in their policy making
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