So before I get into this.. does anyone want to guess who wrote this:
…the Pittsburgh region’s future depends to such a major extent upon retaining and attracting highly qualified and professional and technical people and business enterprisers, who are in demand everywhere and who command a high standard of residential amenity and cultural and professional opportunities.
I was reminded of this quote when reading the summary slides on a new report CityVitals
from CEOs for Cities by Joe Cortright of Impressa Consulting. It’s an interesting set of slides that says there are a bunch new metrics that can be used to measure innovative capacity in cities for the most part. Not having access to the full report I can’t tell you where Pittsburgh ranks in most of these suggested metrics, but the summary slides
gives you a few glimpses.
It goes into the obligatory educational attainment benchmarks.
Just fyi: There is some sort of error in there. See slide 7 where it gives the educational attainment of the population age 25-34. For example it has Austin at 7.1% achieving a college degree or higher. I say that number is more like 39%. It’s not on the slide but for Pittsburgh the number is 34%. I thought these might be %’s for graduate school attainment, but even that appears to be too low. It’s just mislabeled is all. UPDATE
: anonyous commenter explains the error in my interpretation of the slide. See comments for more.
The report does have some new ways of looking at cities and regions. From the summary you can see a few of the ways Pittsburgh shows up as an extreme case. Again, a lot of these are just artifacts of the age demographic for us, but they are still worth thinking about. Slide 13 for example does not mention Pittsburgh, but it has a measure of venture capital collected per 1000 population
. At the bottom: Buffalo at literally 0. I assume that is rounded to zero but maybe it really is nothing.
Slide 18. Surprisingly Cleveland and Cincinatti rank 4 and 5 respectively out of 50 MSA’s in terms of voter participation which is the percentage of the voting age population that voted in the November 2004 presidential election
There is something you don’t normally see on slide 23. Pittsburgh ranks near bottom (48 out of 50) in terms of percentage of population reporting a trip outside of the US
. A reflection of our low immigrant flow and older population for sure.
And on slide 28 we rank 49 out of 50 in terms of Ratio of persons that reported attending a cultural event past year to the number of persons who subscribe to cable television
. Just a tad elitist? Below us is Nashville? Maybe they do not count the Grand Old Opry? Maybe we have a high proportion of people subscribed to cable TV? I dunno.POSTSCRIPT
- November 1st: See this week's edition of PopCityMedia
for more on the CEO of CEO's for Cities.POSTSCRIPT2
- November 8th: and more: the Nov 8th edition of PopCityMedia
goes into more depth on this report.