cities

Every year, The Economist Intelligence Unit publishes a ranking of world cities based on their livability.

Obviously, that's an inherently subjective ranking. I've lived in Seattle for 13 years precisely because my wife and I think it is the most beautiful city we have ever seen. That doesn't seem to matter too much to the folks over at The Economist, however.

Their livability index is weighted as follows: 25% for stability (e.g., crime, terrorism, war); 20% for healthcare (availability and quality); 25% for culture and environment (which includes a grab-bag of various metrics, such as temperature, level of corruption, and cultural attractions); 10% for education (availability and quality); and 20% for infrastructure quality. Using this algorithm, the...

Rural America is facing an existential crisis. As cities continue to grow and prosper, small towns are shrinking. That fundamental divide played itself out in the recent presidential election.

Consider this shocking chart produced by the Brookings Institution. It shows that, in 2000, George W. Bush won 2,397 counties (compared to Al Gore's 659), and those counties represented 46% of America's GDP. Fast forward to 2016. Donald Trump won an even larger share: 2,584 counties (compared to Hillary Clinton's 472). Yet, counties that voted for Trump accounted for only 36% of the nation's GDP. Since most Bush counties also voted for...

Homelessness has surged in some U.S. cities. According to the Wall Street Journal, from 2010 to 2015, homelessness increased 42% in New York City and 12% in Seattle.

A November 2015 report (PDF) by the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development (HUD) ranked the top 10 large cities and top 10 small cities by their homeless populations. These counts were conducted on a single night in January.

As shown, the top three large cities (or geographic areas) with the biggest...