The Forbes list and the story is pretty straightforward; a callout of the large U.S. metro areas with the worst scores for air and water quality, plus measures of toxic releases and Superfund sites.
And It’s a fairly accurate list. All the places named have issues, but I’ve got to say that I’m not proud of being associated with stories like this.
Stories like this focus on the negative, and have titles guaranteed to be irresistable to the casual web browser – America’s Dirtiest Cities, Miserable Cities, Worst Cities to Live, Depressing Cities, Dangerous Cities, Dying Cities, Drunkest Cities, Fattest Cities, Worst Schools, and Dumbest Cities.
This July was the hottest on record in the U.S. and 2012 is on track to be our hottest year ever. You better believe Americans are cranking the A/C and heading for the swimming holes.
But when it comes to my “cool cities” study, I’m talking about the other kind of cool. The sunglasses, Levi’s and t-shirt James Dean cool.
I worked with Forbes with their article to find where the youth of America are headed, where it’s “happening.” Would you believe Houston comes out on top? Last year H-town sported a vigorous 2.6% job growth while welcoming over 50,000 new residents to the area, many of them young professionals.
We looked at recreational opportunities, such as amount of green space, golfing and skiing, and pro and college sports teams.
We also used my Diversity Index, which measures the likelihood that someone you meet will be of different race or ethnicity. Higher diversity translates to a greater number of cool stores, events, and eateries.
Coinciding with Veteran’s Day, we just completed an interesting study about the best places in the U.S. for military retirees to start a second career. Since most veterans retire from service in their 30’s or 40’s, they have plenty of time to start a new professional chapter in their lives.
So what are the best places to enter the civilian job sector? To help us find out, we partnered with USAA (a financial services provider) and Military.com (the largest military and veteran membership organization). We looked at factors such as affordability, unemployment rate, prevalence of military skill related jobs, and number of veteran-owned businesses. But we didn’t stop there.
The results of our newest study were released today on the CBS show, Sunday Morning. Louisville, KY earned the top spot of Most Sleepless City, and Honolulu residents got the best rest in our study of insomnia.
(see the video clip on CBS)
Our new study ranks the 50 largest metropolitan areas in the United States, home to fully half of the U.S. population. The Sperling study analyzes over 400,000 responses from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (the world’s largest telephone survey, conducted annually by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), and also considers factors contributing to poor sleep,
such as joblessness, divorce, and lengthy commuting.