Where is the happiest place in New York?
by Hans Pul
Where is the happiest place in New York? The above diagram maps “happiness” in the city based on the content of geotagged tweets. The diagram is structured according Manhattan’s grid, where red blocks represent “happy tweets”, while blueish blocks indicate a lower grade of happiness. It was created by researchers of the University of Vermont and is part of a fascinating post (read it, it makes you happy).
After the break I will introduce “Mappiness”, an iPhone app designed to collect data about how happy people are, taking into account their activities, the people they are with and the type of environment they’re in.
by Brendan Colgan
Last summer Creative Cities International (CCI) launched a new cultural impact study in the U.S. entitled the Vitality Index (VI) [click here for the report]. The study aims to model the “human experience of the city at its heart.” In practice, it is a ranking and assessment which applies the same level of rigor to qualitative factors as it does quantitative ones. It brings to life a city’s human strengths as it respects its complexities: a vibrant downtown, an engaged populace, educational opportunity, economic sustainability, good transport, diversity of population and opportunity, and a citizenry that embraces its history and culture. I was fortunate enough to be able to interview Linda Lees, director of CCI, about their recent study: Continue reading
By Nils Grube
John Leland reports in his article for the New York Times about current struggles in the once-industrial neighborhood of Williamsburg, Brooklyn. We already posted some articles about the topic this march ( 6th march / 13th march) and this case shows once again, how different the term gentrification is used for development processes in urban neighborhoods. In the article Neil Smith, geography professor at the City University of New York Graduate Center, argues that the understanding of the impacts of gentrification has changed:
“It’s no longer just about housing. It’s really a systematic class-remaking of city neighborhoods. It’s driven by many of the same forces, especially the profitable use of land. But it’s about creating entire environments: employment, recreation, environmental conditions.”
(c) Paul Zinken
by Nils Grube
The last few months a huge discussion was spreading across Berlin about negative effects of international tourism on the city. “Foreign visitors are being blamed for increasing rents, noisy streets and neighbourhood upheaval“, the Australian-Estonian and Berlin based freelance journalist Joel Alas summarises the reproaches on the so-called “party tourists” in his critical column for the german newspaper “Der Tagesspiegel” (1). Continue reading