Archive for the ‘Cities’ Category

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Fri Jan 7th 2011 at 1:00pm UTC

Chart of the Day – The Ever-Rising Cost of America’s Highways

Friday, January 7th, 2011

Do gas taxes, tolls, and auto registration fees ensure that America’s highways “pay for themselves?” Not at all.

A new report by U.S. PIRG, the federation of state Public Interest Research Groups, shows the cumulative net subsidy that U.S. taxpayers have paid for the interstate highway system since its inception —a sum that is fast-approaching $700 billion.


Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Mon Jan 3rd 2011 at 9:00am UTC

The Role of Beauty in Community Satisfaction

Monday, January 3rd, 2011

Beautiful Places: The Role of Perceived Aesthetic Beauty in Community Satisfaction” is a new paper on regional studies that I wrote with my MPI colleagues Charlotta Mellander and Kevin Stolarick.

Here’s the abstract:

This research uses a large survey sample of individuals across United States locations to examine the effects of beauty and aesthetics on community satisfaction. The paper conducts these estimations by ordinary least-squares, ordered logit, and multinomial logit. The findings confirm that beauty is significantly associated with community satisfaction. Other significant factors include economic security, schools, and social interaction. Further, community-level factors are significantly more important than individual demographic characteristics in explaining community satisfaction.

Read the full paper here.

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Thu Dec 16th 2010 at 11:00am UTC

America’s Most Walkable Cities

Thursday, December 16th, 2010

The great economic reset we are in the midst of extends even to Americans’ choices of places to live. The popularity of sprawling auto-dependent suburbs is waning. A majority of Americans – six in 10 – say they would prefer to live in walkable neighborhoods, in both cities and suburbs, if they could. Writing in The Wall Street Journal a few months ago, I noted how changes in our economy and demography are altering “the texture of suburban life in favor of denser, more walkable, mixed-use communities.” Christopher Leinberger has shown the positive effects of walkability in cities, towns, and suburbs; the architects Ellen Dunham Jones and June Williamson have detailed ways that older car-oriented suburbs can be retrofitted into more people-friendly, mixed-use, walkable communities. And walkability pays. According to research by Joe Cortright, housing prices have held up better in more walkable communities. (more…)

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Fri Dec 10th 2010 at 11:15am UTC

Cities, Brains, and Brawn

Friday, December 10th, 2010

Just as people with higher levels of education have fared better during the Great Recession, cities and regions with higher levels of human capital have experienced lower rates of unemployment and higher wages. But human capital, which takes into account only the level of a worker’s education, is a crude measure – some of the world’s greatest entrepreneurs, like Bill Gates and Steve Jobs, are college dropouts.

A while back, I wrote about research done by my colleagues at the Martin Prosperity Institute (MPI), that took data provided by the Bureau of Labor Statistics’ O*NET Project on actual skills (physical skills of the sort used in manufacturing, analytical or cognitive skills, and social intelligence skills like the ability to direct teams, form entrepreneurial new businesses and organizations, and mobilize people and resources behind common causes and objectives) and charted their relations to the economic performance of cities and regions. (more…)

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Thu Nov 25th 2010 at 11:00am UTC

The Social Advantage of Large Cities

Thursday, November 25th, 2010

From Silicon Valley to Shanghai, cities are increasingly seen as engines of economic progress. Cities bring together diverse groups of people and companies in ways that increase productivity and create the networks, clusters, and chance interactions that lead to the discovery of new innovations and the creations of new entrepreneurial businesses. Up until now, the economic performance of cities has been gauged in terms of the education or human capital level of residents or the kinds of work they do.

But new research by my colleagues at the Martin Prosperity Institute sheds lights on the relationship between cities and three underlying types of workforce skills – physical skills of the sort used in manufacturing, analytical or cognitive skills, and social intelligence skills like the ability to direct teams, form entrepreneurial new businesses and organizations, and mobilize both people and resources behind common causes and objectives. The chart below plots the distribution of these three sets of skills by city size. (more…)

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Wed Nov 17th 2010 at 10:34am UTC

The Power of Cities

Wednesday, November 17th, 2010

My interview yesterday on CNN International’s Urban Planet Series:

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Wed Nov 10th 2010 at 4:30pm UTC

The Well-Being Map

Wednesday, November 10th, 2010

Here’s a new map of well-being for America’s 350-plus metro areas. It’s based on surveys with more than one million Americans from data from the Gallup-Heathways Well-Being Index. Well-being follows the same basic bicoastal pattern as income, human capital, and the creative class, being higher on the coasts than in the Midwest and Sunbelt.


CCE Editor
by CCE Editor
Mon Nov 8th 2010 at 10:00am UTC

Tune In to the Livable Cities Webcast on 11/11/10

Monday, November 8th, 2010

What do you think makes a city livable? What contributes to a person’s sense of health and well-being? Tune in to the Livable Cities Webcast on Thursday, November 11, 2010, at 11 a.m. EST to find out. During the webcast, Richard Florida and a panel of internationally renowned experts will be debating the latest insights on hot topics of discussion including:

  • How government and individuals can keep a city moving and help the people in it to stay healthy.
  • How cities’ residents can define their city’s evolution as a brand.
  • What role innovation and technology can play in addressing the needs of older people in cities.

Underpinning the debates will be new data from the Philips Health and Well-Being Index which explores more than 30,000 people’s own perceptions of their health and well-being.

Have something to say? You can get involved in the discussions yourself. Submit a question ahead of the November 11 debate here or Tweet your questions and views to @LivableCities.

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Sun Oct 31st 2010 at 12:33pm UTC

NPR Weekend Edition – Best Cities for Trick-or-Treaters

Sunday, October 31st, 2010

Click here to listen to the fun segment on today’s show.

As NPR describes it:

Professor Richard Florida, director of the University of Toronto’s Martin Prosperity Institute, has released his Trick or Treat Index for 2010. It’s a kind of Lonely Planet guide for hobgoblins. He gives us his top-five list of the best U.S. cities for Halloween trick-or-treating.

Here’s the original list, a map, and the list for Canada.

Richard Florida
by Richard Florida
Fri Oct 29th 2010 at 5:20pm UTC

The Trick-or-Treater Map

Friday, October 29th, 2010

This map, courtesy of my MPI colleague Zara Matheson, shows how all U.S. metros stack up on my Trick-or-Treater Index. It expands the top 20 list I posted earlier this week at The Daily Beast and covers all metro regions across the United States.