Archive for the ‘demography’ tag
This thing is mind-blowingly good. It’s simultaneously beautiful and a good way to get a sense of the data it presents, which is unfortunately rare.
I’ve snapped a static picture above, but you really should take a bit of time to interact if you’re the least bit curious. Some of the actions are a bit puzzling, but clicking around a few times give you a sense of its power and utility.
Second Largest Religion Map
I’ve recently learned that I’m more interested in maps than I previously knew. And this one’s pretty cool, though the comment thread (linked below casts doubt on some of its specific data points). This is a map of countries shaded by the second largest religion in their territory. You can probably easily guess the first in most of them, but the second wouldn’t have occurred to me for many of these.
(via /r/MapPorn — which is completely SFW; my efforts to find the creator came up empty)
Truly living up to it’s name, Strange Maps offers the stunning overlay of those areas that were the greatest cotton producers in 1860 — and thus had the largest slave populations — and those areas most strongly for the election of Barack Obama. Proof that if nothing else, history lives on.
Also, I’d love to hear some theories about that high-producer on Tennessee’s southern border that’s now solidly red. Is that a city? — my geography of the South is pretty bad.
The Financial Times recently ran an interesting story profiling seven “average” people from the country of 1.1 billion.
A generation ago, the “Indian dream” would almost certainly have involved a ticket to Vancouver, London or New York. That is less true today. Daru, like so many of her peers, thinks she can best build her future here. “India now has enough opportunities for my generation,” she says. “I have friends who have gone to the US and to the UK to earn some money, but then they come back. I see a lot of youngsters thinking of coming back to their friends and family.”
In an excellent overview of suburbs in the United States, The Economist recently pointed to an interesting fact: while suburbs are increasingly diverse, urban areas are becoming whiter.
According to William Frey, a demographer, the white population of big-city suburbs grew by 7% between 2000 and 2006. In the same period the suburban Asian population grew by 16%, the black population by 24% and the Hispanic population by an astonishing 60%. Many immigrants to America now move directly to the suburbs without passing through established urban ghettos. Having conquered suburbia, ethnic-minority groups are now swiftly infiltrating the more distant “exurbs”.
As the suburbs become more mixed, some inner-city areas are turning less so. Los Angeles, which markets itself as the city “where the world comes together”, and New York (“the world’s second home”) both added whites and lost blacks between 2000 and 2006. So many blacks moved out of Los Angeles that, were the exodus to continue unabated, they would disappear from the city around 2050. Manhattan and San Francisco lost Hispanics as well as blacks, which is remarkable given that group’s speedy growth in the country as a whole. Meanwhile, the world came together on their fringes.
The Economist compares the cost of living in cities around the world. I was rather surprised that neither London nor New York came out on top. As proof of my ignorance they say Norway’s Oslo has topped the list since 2005.
Also, this map of American cities and their singles sex ratio has been floating around. It appears to have originated on The Daily Dish. It appears to be related to Richard Florida’s recent Who’s Your City?
I’ll leave the analysis of this interesting data to Mr. Yglesias:
You’ll see that Los Angeles, despite its reputation, is surprisingly dense. Conversely, transit-friendly Portland isn’t especially dense (less so than Houston or Dallas or Las Vegas) which goes to show how much smart policy matters — if all 23 denser-than-Portland cities on the list were as savvy as Portland about bikes, pedestrians, and transit we’d have a much better environmental situation in the country without constructing any new, denser urban areas.
Maybe I’m the only one who enjoys discussions about demographics and voting patterns, but I thought this was interesting:
America’s suburbs used to be bastions of Republicanism. No longer. Robert Lang of the Brookings Institution, a think-tank, examined the voting behaviour of metropolitan counties and found that close-in suburbs now reliably vote for Democrats. That should be expected: as they become more urban, their residents care more about public transport, schools and other government-sponsored activities—and they attract more city types, often of a liberal bent, from the urban centres.
So emerging suburbs and exurbs, the farthest-out among them, are the new political battleground. George Bush poured resources into this urban fringe in 2004, says Mr Lang, running up larger margins there than when he lost the popular vote in 2000. The result was Mr Bush’s more impressive re-election.
This week’s Economist makes the argument that total GDP, which is usually used for measures of growth from country to country doesn’t work very well. Because it ignores the direction of population size, it distorts the picture in favor of growing countries — and misses the fact that the US is already in a recession.
Once you accept that growth in GDP per head is the best way to measure economic performance, the standard definition of a recession—a decline in real GDP over some period (eg, two consecutive quarters or year on year)—also seems flawed. For example, zero GDP growth in Japan, where the population is declining, would still leave the average citizen better off. But in America, the average person would be worse off. A better definition of recession, surely, is a fall in average income per person. On this basis, America has been in recession since the fourth quarter of last year when its GDP rose by an annualised 0.6%, implying that real income per head fell by 0.4%.
There’s a fascinating and — to me — counter-intuitive article in March’s The Atlantic. Christopher Leinberger makes this interesting contention:
For 60 years, Americans have pushed steadily into the suburbs, transforming the landscape and (until recently) leaving cities behind. But today the pendulum is swinging back toward urban living, and there are many reasons to believe this swing will continue. As it does, many low-density suburbs and McMansion subdivisions, including some that are lovely and affluent today, may become what inner cities became in the 1960s and ’70s—slums characterized by poverty, crime, and decay.