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As Kurds Fight for Freedom in Syria, Fears Rise in Turkey

As Kurds Fight for Freedom in Syria, Fears Rise in Turkey of Following Suit

Via Seth Dixon
Dawn Haas Tache's insight:

Since the fall of the Ottoman Empire, the Kurds have been caught in other people's plans for what the states of the Middle East should look like and are the largest 'stateless nation' in the world.  Divided between Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey, the Kurds have not been able to politically mobilize support for Kurdistan as they have been violently oppressed in these countries.  The Kurds in Iraq have been able to gain political autonomy with the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime, and the Syrian Kurds are hoping to do the same if and when the Assad regime crumbles at the end of the civil war.  This make Turkey concerned that the Kurds in the southeastern part of Turkey will make renewed efforts to push for sovereignty. 


UPDATE: This PBS feature explains the historic timeline of the important political events for the Kurds in Iraq.This article from the Economist focuses on the key reason that outside forces won't leave the Kurds alone: oil.

 

Tags: Syria, ethnic, conflict, political, Turkey, culture, devolution.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 18, 2012 9:17 AM

Since the fall of the Ottoman Empire, the Kurds have been caught in other people's plans for what the states of the Middle East should look like and are the largest 'stateless nation' in the world.  Divided between Iraq, Iran, Syria and Turkey, the Kurds have not been able to politically mobilize support for Kurdistan as they have been violently oppressed in these countries.  The Kurds in Iraq have been able to gain political autonomy with the fall of Saddam Hussein's regime, and the Syrian Kurds are hoping to do the same if and when the Assad regime crumbles at the end of the civil war.  This make Turkey concerned that the Kurds in the southeastern part of Turkey will make renewed efforts to push for sovereignty. 


UPDATE: This PBS feature explains the historic timeline of the important political events for the Kurds in Iraq.This article from the Economist focuses on the key reason that outside forces won't leave the Kurds alone: oil.


Tags: Syria, ethnic, conflict, political, Turkey, culture, devolution.

Joshua Choiniere's comment, December 18, 2012 11:23 AM
This is really interesting professor
Eliana Oliveira Burian's curator insight, December 28, 2012 6:34 AM

How to handle it?

 

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Big U.S. Cities Growing Faster than Suburbs

Big U.S. Cities Growing Faster than Suburbs | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
For the first time in a century, most of America's largest cities are growing at a faster rate than their surrounding suburbs.

 

"As young adults seeking a foothold in the weak job market shun home-buying and stay put in bustling urban centers," this profoundly is changing the demographic processes that create our major urban areas.  "Driving the resurgence are young adults, who are delaying careers, marriage and having children amid persistently high unemployment. Burdened with college debt or toiling in temporary, lower-wage positions, they are spurning homeownership in the suburbs for shorter-term, no-strings-attached apartment living, public transit and proximity to potential jobs in larger cities."  With home ownership no longer the goal and the suburbs the destination of choice, how with this affect the urban structure of or major metropolitan areas? 


Via Seth Dixon
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How railroads, highways and other man-made lines racially divide America’s cities

How railroads, highways and other man-made lines racially divide America’s cities | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
The power of roads, bridges and tracks to enforce segregation.
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A global surge in refugees leaves Europe struggling to cope

A global surge in refugees leaves Europe struggling to cope | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Europe is receiving waves of people driven out of Africa and the Middle East by war, poverty and oppression.
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A map shows how much your state contributes to the U.S. economy

A map shows how much your state contributes to the U.S. economy | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Just where does America’s economic activity happen? This map by Fixr.com shows the states sized to represent their contribution to the economy, using data released from the U.S. Bureau of Economic Analysis on June 10. The size of each state is proportional to its real gross domestic product in 2014. You can see that many […]
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Government workers live longer

Government workers live longer | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
IT IS not quite the secret of eternal life. But it seems that, in America, public sector workers live slightly longer than those employed in the private sector. A...
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Five reasons why we should still read maps

Five reasons why we should still read maps | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
The Royal Institute of Navigation says reliance on sat-navs is undermining map-reading skills. So why should we still read maps?

Via Seth Dixon
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bernieshoot's curator insight, June 5, 6:56 AM

#geography #education 

Catherine Lamarque-Manuel's curator insight, June 6, 5:55 AM
Lire un carte est toujours le début d'une histoire...
Adilson Camacho's curator insight, June 6, 12:44 PM

É isso aí!

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The Most And Least Sprawling Cities In America

The Most And Least Sprawling Cities In America | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it

"Tracking changes in the shape of American cities over 10 years reveals which cities pack the most into a small space, but don't worry, sprawlers: Los Angeles shows you can change your fate."


Today’s nearly 314 million U.S. residents will expand to 401 million in less than 40 years. Wherever you fall on the cultural spectrum between country and city mouse, the fact remains that we simply won’t be able to use up resources the way we do now in sprawling suburbs shaped by car culture.  See also this infographic depicting those with the worst sprawl. and CNN Money's list of the worst sprawl and a discussion of it's impacts.  

 

Tags: density, sustainability, housing, urban, planning, unit 7 cities. 


Via Seth Dixon
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Geofreak's curator insight, April 3, 2014 1:35 PM

Ruimtelijk ordening, stedelijke gebieden

VS

L.Long's curator insight, April 15, 2014 6:57 PM

Urban  Dynamics

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New York City's Disappearing Mom-and-Pop Storefronts

New York City's Disappearing Mom-and-Pop Storefronts | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Two photographers set out to see what happened to small family businesses in New York City in a decade

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Ms. Harrington's curator insight, April 12, 2014 7:28 AM

What a decade can do to a cultural landscape.

L.Long's curator insight, April 15, 2014 6:55 PM

Changing nature of world cities

Jake Reardon's curator insight, April 21, 2014 5:49 PM

To be honest I am surprised that "Mom and Pop" storefronts lasted this long in New York City. It just seems to me that as a city grows and rent prices go up the smaller store fronts would naturally be pushed out by larger conglomerates who would be more suited to handle the rent prices. Of course it is an old addeage of capitalism that as long as you offer a good product that consumers would be inclined to consume you can stay above water in even the most competitive locations. Although to me that would appear to have its limits. Perhaps the economic tides of the present in New York are that limit.

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The U.S. Cities That Sprawled the Most (and Least) Between 2000 and 2010

The U.S. Cities That Sprawled the Most (and Least) Between 2000 and 2010 | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Two maps and six charts take sprawl rankings to another level.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, June 5, 2014 10:19 PM

One of the great results of the decennial census is that geographers, demographers, sociologists, urbanists and countless others, can track the same population or spatial pattern and note historical changes over a 10 year span.  This series of maps and charts highlights some of the major changes.  You shouldn't be surprised that Atlanta is the United States' most sprawling major city and that San Francisco is the most compact, but this article dives beneath surface in a way that is still very accessible.   


Tagsurban, unit 7 cities, housing, sprawlneighborhoodplanning, densityplanning

François Arnal's curator insight, June 7, 2014 2:18 AM

L'étalement urbain aux Etats Unis.

 

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An Intriguingly Detailed Animation of How People Move Around a City

An Intriguingly Detailed Animation of How People Move Around a City | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Watch the commuting patterns of New York, San Francisco and Los Angeles.

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Linda Alexander's curator insight, July 13, 2014 10:41 AM

You can actually plug-in income levels for these 3 cities and view daily commutes.  Fascinating CityLab data!

 

Bronwyn Burke's curator insight, July 13, 2014 6:28 PM
Another fabulous post for Year 7 via Seth Dixon. An aspect of liveability in colour!
MsPerry's curator insight, August 12, 2014 7:03 PM

APHG-U7

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Squatters on the Skyline

"Facing a mounting housing shortage, squatters have transformed an abandoned skyscraper in downtown Caracas into a makeshift home for more than 2,500 people."


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Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, February 25, 4:55 PM

The situation here in Caracas is very sad.  Sometimes we don't know how lucky we have it in America.  The picture that sticks with me from this video is the young man in a shirt and tie who is trying to provide for his family but could not get any credit.  He did not look like someone who is down on their luck.  He looked like a man who was optimistic and trying to inch forward.  I loved the picture he stood for.  It seems too often that we see people in America with the "Oh, poor me"-attitude!

Joshua Mason's curator insight, March 3, 12:02 PM

From a young age, we learn that food and water, clothing, and shelter are the three necessities for life. The housing crisis in Venezuela depraves the people of at least one of those things. Making use of abandoned buildings, the people of Caracas have found a way to take care of the shelter. It's amazing how a skyscraper originally intended to house businesses that were incredibly affluent could end up becoming a slum of sorts after the business went under. 

 

A solution to the problem would be to officially turn the building into housing for the poor. Since it's been "unoccupied" since the 90's and the government has shown no intent to force the people out or tear it down, they might as well just use it as what the current inhabitants are using it for. The structure, for the most part, is already built. If they were able to add on to the core, then the building could be built at a lower cost than a new one. Although, the modifications the current residents may have made may have proved too costly to fix for the project to be feasible.

 

It's amazing these people have found a way to live together collectively and form their own little autonomous dwelling complete with a hierarchy and shops. 

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, March 5, 2:13 PM

The squatters have made their own community complete with services and mini marts.  This tells me there is not enough affordable housing if the people of Caracas are willing to live in dangerous conditions.  Caracas government needs to build affordable housing or create better paying jobs so the citizens can spend the money in the community.  Its a cycle that needs everyone's participation to work to build a sustaining economy.  

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The surprising math of cities and corporations

"Physicist Geoffrey West has found that simple, mathematical laws govern the properties of cities — that wealth, crime rate, walking speed and many other aspects of a city can be deduced from a single number: the city's population. In this mind-bending talk from TEDGlobal he shows how it works and how similar laws hold for organisms and corporations."


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 4, 2014 2:44 PM

While corporations rise and fall, it is quite rare for a city to entirely fail as an economic system.  Huge cities have some negative consequences, but the networks that operate in the city function more efficiently on economies of scale in a way that offsets the negatives.  Increasing a city's population will continue to improve the economies of scale (larger cities have higher wages per capita, more creative employment per capita, etc.).  However, this growth requires major technological innovations to sustain long-term growth.  

 

Tagsurban, planningmegacities, industry, economic, scaleTED, video.

Built 4 Betterness Ed van den Berg's curator insight, December 14, 2014 3:17 PM

Not surprisingly the DNA of cities is a follow-up of human DNA and understanding this will explain and predict how the body of a city will develop!

SRA's curator insight, April 16, 2:10 AM

The idea that cities are just organisms that are satisfying the laws of biology is interesting. Especially because Physicist Geoffrey West brings the idea of Scalability which by definition is, the ability of a system, network, or process to handle a growing amount of work in a capable manner or its ability to be enlarged to accommodate that growth. What’s mind blowing to me is that the system that is referred to here is human interaction.  We create these cities through our interaction and experience. With a growth rate of 1,000,000 people every year the math adds up to an agreeable 15% rise in income levels, patents, and super creative people every year which is undoubted a win for civilization and society. But with that we must keep in mind also this means a 15% increase in things like deadly disease, crime, poverty, and ecological issues leading to further degradation of our planet. This unbounded growth means the system is destined to collapse. The math behind cities doesn't lie if we don’t prepare cities have a fate to die like every other organism in Biology. So it is up to us to create and innovate to sustain this growth and avoid the collapse. But we must do so at a forever increasing pace. Which subsequently is also part of another system predetermined to collapse. What I mean is what happens when we cannot innovate fast enough to sustain this growth?


- Caleb Beckett

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Can You Find Yourself on This Amazing Map of America?

Can You Find Yourself on This Amazing Map of America? | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
How diverse is your neighborhood really? This map by Dustin Cable at the University of Virginia’s Weldon Cooper Center for Public Service displays the population distribution of every person in America (as of the 2010 census) along racial and ethnic lines. The map features 308,745,538 dots, each smaller than a...
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This crazy-looking map shows how much wealth is hidden on America’s coasts

This crazy-looking map shows how much wealth is hidden on America’s coasts | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Max Galka, who runs the blog metrocosm, created the map above to illustrate just how much wealth is locked up in the land value of America’s coasts. In the map above, he took the total residential property value for every county in the U.S. (the contiguous 48 states), and substituted those values for each county’s […]
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Graphic: The world’s refugee crisis is the worst in recorded history

The number has reached 55 million, roughly the population of the United Kingdom.
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Uncowed

Uncowed | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
In search of pastures new FOR Muhammadu Abubakar, life is an uphill struggle. Farming in Nigeria is tricky at the best of times. Only the brave or the downright...
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Why 12-Foot Traffic Lanes Are Disastrous for Safety and Must Be Replaced Now

Why 12-Foot Traffic Lanes Are Disastrous for Safety and Must Be Replaced Now | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Let's make "10 not 12!" a new mantra for saving our cities and towns.

 

[12 foot lanes] are wrong because of a fundamental error that underlies the practice of traffic engineering—and many other disciplines—an outright refusal to acknowledge that human behavior is impacted by its environment.

 

Tags: transportation, planning, spatial, scale.


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Why Some Countries Are Poor and Others Rich

"The reason why some countries are rich and others poor depends on the quality of their institutions, the culture they have, the natural resources they find and what latitude they're on."

 

Tags: development, statistics, economic, globalization, poverty.


Via Seth Dixon
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Henk Trimp's curator insight, June 12, 6:26 AM

Questionable, but intriguing contribution to an ever continuing discussion...

Kaitlyn Evans's comment, July 30, 5:24 AM
I'm not sure if I believe everything this video stated, however I think it is a good topic to analyze. I think it would be interesting to see how the rich countries became rich. They can't just have started on top. I also believe the rich countries abuse the poor countries because we can get goods/minerals/just about anything for a small price and then sell it in the rich country for much more.
Rob Duke's comment, July 30, 3:34 PM
...certainly privilege from times past when there were no international watchdogs comes into play, but even when we control for colonialism, certain countries do much better than others. I'm inclined to think like Jared Diamond (The World Until Yesterday) and David Landes (The Wealth and Poverty of Nations. 1998) that institutions matter. If we protect property, provide vertical institutional support while also making room in the shadow of the law for ad hoc cooperation (see Elinor Ostrom's work), and protect intellectual property rights, we tend to have more wealth developed.
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3 Cities With Freeways Going Nowhere

3 Cities With Freeways Going Nowhere | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
Once thought to be symbols of prosperity, innercity highways are now just eyesores — and sources of civic dysfunction — to some new urbanists.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, March 10, 2014 12:00 PM

This TED Talk also explores what cities should be with old freeways, suggesting that they should be dismantled and the spaces revitalized (and yes, my inner-Californian linguistic roots demands that I call them freeways).


Tags: transportation, urban, planning.

Built 4 Betterness Ed van den Berg's curator insight, March 11, 2014 9:44 AM

How's that for Rotterdam

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American Makeover: SPRAWLANTA

"American Makeover is a web series on new urbanism, the antidote to sprawl."


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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 3, 2014 2:49 PM

American Makeover only produced two segments in the series, but they are excellent examples that show the planning ethos of new urbanism.  In this episode, they lay out the argument against urban sprawl.  In Episode 2, they show the ideas that guided the planning of Seaside, Florida.  For a map of some of my favorite place based videos, which will include these, click here.     


tags: suburbs, transportation, planning, sprawlurban, land use, unit 7 cities

Tracy Galvin's curator insight, April 26, 2014 3:54 PM

I have to wonder how far is too far? The houses are much more affordable when they are far outside the city center but, how much more expensive is it to travel so far every day? Between gas prices and hours not at home or work anything you save on a house price gets spent on transportation costs. It is just a transfer of funds.

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Can You Identify These Cities From Their Light Signatures?

Can You Identify These Cities From Their Light Signatures? | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it

"The light that a city emits is like its glowing fingerprint. From the orderly grid of Manhattan, to the sprawling, snaking streets of Milan, to the bright contrast of Kuwait’s ring-roads, each city leaves its own pattern of tiny glowing dots. See if you can ID these cities based on the way they shine."


Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, April 12, 2014 9:59 PM

This short quiz of 16 cities combines several analytic components of geography that you won't see in more standard map quizzes for regional geography;  this draws on some similar skills similar to the map quiz that was based on identifying the city based on Starbucks locations.  Some recognition of local spatial patterns from previous map analysis can make this quiz easier but there are still some cities that you haven't ever looked at from space before.  Things to consider as you attempt this quiz:  Which of the four possible selections can you rule out out?  What enabled you to eliminate those selections (e.g.-coastal, scale, size, grid pattern, transportation systems, density, etc.)?  What does to layout of the city tell us about the planning and historical origins of the city?  Is there one urban model that best helps us explain the configuration of this city?     


Tags: urbanmodels, planning, density, urbanism, unit 7 citiestrivia.

Nevermore Sithole's curator insight, April 14, 2014 11:00 AM

Geography education

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Beijing's Facelift

"A government-initiated redevelopment plan will transform one of the oldest neighborhoods in Beijing into a polished tourist attraction."


Via Seth Dixon
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Louis Mazza's curator insight, March 26, 2:24 PM

In Beijing, China the government has plans to turn one of the oldest neighborhoods in Beijing, Gulou, to a tourist attracting. This is one of the only areas that the government did not knock down in the mass urbanization missions. Most of the residences here are poor and much of life is lived in public. Hopefully the tourist attraction will garnish money and jobs for the cities inhabitants. Large areas of the old broken down neighborhood will be turned into shops, hotels, and a museum. Inhabitants of the area to be knocked down will be moved to high rises on the outskirts of town. Some are mad and feel that the city should not be touched at all and that would be the correct way to preserve it as a historical sight.

Kendra King's curator insight, April 3, 7:39 PM

Normally I am annoyed at projects that end up destroying history, but in this instance I think the area needs to be remodeled. Part of the reason I am not fazed by the history being lost is because a fair amount of the area was already so poorly kept that many of the structures were either ruble or dilapidated. At the rate the area was going, it was already going to lose its history anyways. While it would be nice of the government to keep a small portion of the good standing landscape, I think the museum being built in the area is a nod at maintaining there history. So since you can’t have it all, I would rather side with the government trying to raise the standard of living for people who have been in continuous abject poverty since about the 13th century. As you said before, invest something in an area and you typically get something in return. Plus it seems that most of the people angered by this move are those outside of the area being remodeled (i.e. historians). I personally think those people are farther removed from the actual decision then those living there. So once again, I am happy to side with the people being most affected by the poverty stricken land. 

Felix Ramos Jr.'s curator insight, May 6, 10:27 AM

As a man who graduated with a Bachelor's degree in History,  it goes without saying that this causes me sadness.  But even taking the history component out of the picture, this reformation project is also destroying much of that area's culture and identity.  They are risking the few details that remain of their culture's past in order to move the area onto a more global scale.  Another negative is the fact that they are picking up the poverty-stricken residents of this community and shipping them to another part of town like they are pieces of livestock.

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Freakonomics » Parking Is Hell

Freakonomics » Parking Is Hell | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it

"The episode begins with Stephen Dubner talking to parking guru Donald Shoup, a professor of urban planning at UCLA and author of the landmark book The High Cost of Free Parking. In a famous Times op-ed, Shoup argued that as much as one-third of urban congestion is caused by people cruising for curb parking. But, as Shoup tells Dubner, there ain’t no such thing as a free parking spot."


Via Seth Dixon
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Seth Dixon's curator insight, August 23, 2014 10:01 AM

Everyone searching for a parking space has at one time felt that there are not enough spaces where and when you need them...did you know that their are at least 3 surface lot parking spaces for every car in the United States (not including garages, driveways, etc)?  With 250 million passenger vehicles for 316 million people, that means there are 800 million surface lot parking spaces (that account for only 60-70% of our parking needs).  Parking then is a much bigger issue that we want to believe; this is one of the reasons why IKEA is starting to rethinking their construction model that historically has been designed around huge parking lots.   


Tags: urban, urban ecology, transportation, planning.

PIRatE Lab's curator insight, September 6, 2014 4:49 PM

Everyone searching for a parking space has at one time felt that there are not enough spaces where and when you need them...did you know that their are at least 3 surface lot parking spaces for every car in the United States (not including garages, driveways, etc)?  With 250 million passenger vehicles for 316 million people, that means there are 800 million surface lot parking spaces (that account for only 60-70% of our parking needs).  Parking then is a much bigger issue that we want to believe; this is one of the reasons why IKEA is starting to rethinking their construction model that historically has been designed around huge parking lots.   


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Detroit by Air

Detroit by Air | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
The stark contrast between the haves and have-nots is apparent from above, so too is the city’s rebound.

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Seth Dixon's curator insight, December 7, 2014 9:18 PM

In the 1950s, Detroit was the 4th largest city in the U.S. with a booming population around 2 million as seen in some vintage footage of Detroit.  As the de-industrialization process restructured the US economy, globalization restructured the world’s economy, and Detroit’s local economic strategy crumbledDetroit was $18-20 million in debt with a population around 700,000 and is unable to pull out of this nosedive. The tax base shrunk, city services were spread thin and in 2013, Detroit filed for bankruptcy.  Today, some parts of Detroit are rebounding well while others are in absolute disarray.  These differences can, in part, be understood by using aerial photography and a spatial perspective.  


Tags: urban, economic, industry, Detroit

Dennis Swender's curator insight, December 10, 2014 4:23 PM

A multicultural research project:  by foot, by car, or by plane

Select your site:  Detroit?  Kansas City? Feguson? New York?

Take some pictures.  Start observing.  Interview some people.  Assemble some facts.   Justify your opinions. 

 

Norka McAlister's curator insight, February 2, 5:16 PM

Deindustrialization and globalization are some of the reason why Detroit fluctuates configurations in the geography of manufacturing. The reduction of production in the car industry and all activities along with it is harmful to Detroit’s citizens, leaving a lot of workers without jobs. Globalization was adopted and American companies became attracted to the very low wages of workers in other countries that produce similar quality products as the US. Unfortunately, since globalization became the preferred option for the US, deindustrialization in Detroit rapidly increased. On the other hand, with the continuing advancements in technology, it turns out to be manageable with a few employees. Wealthy Detroiters sprawl out in the suburbs out of the city.  Due to the elimination of manufacturing jobs and relocation of residents out of the state, Detroit city remains with a population of 700,000 people. The effect of deindustrialization has been devastating, not only for workers, but also for the city itself. The regions with the lowest population rate will find it hard to survive with the increase of infrastructure and less income in taxes.

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11 Signs Your Hood Is Being Gentrified

11 Signs Your Hood Is Being Gentrified | AP HumanGeo | Scoop.it
A Washington, D.C., resident describes the changes and privilege that have moved into her longtime neighborhood.

 

Tags: neighborhood, gentrification, urban, place, culture, economic, Washington DC.


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Emily Bian's curator insight, March 22, 8:48 PM

7) Uneven development, zones of abandonment, disamenity, and gentrification

This article was written by a woman who noticed a lot of changes in Washington D.C. Gentrification led to these many changes, by becoming not as unique and urbanizing at other people's expense. She describes gentrification as remodeling very quickly and ferociously. A lot of the things she says are for the general good of the people, like installing street lights, but don't take into consideration the people who don't appreciate the changes. Stores like walmart are taking over the family owned stores, and more people are moving in. 

This article describes gentrification perfectly, and I like her pictures to go along with it. I think this would help introduce this vocab term to new students. 

Lydia Tsao's curator insight, March 24, 12:29 AM

Sadly, gentrification happens all across the world. Poor populations in cities are disadvantaged and often have to move out due to wealthier populations moving in. One of the signs I found most disturbing was that police will start patrolling the areas where wealthier and poorer populations mix. This is a sad reality. Police do this to ensure that crime rates are low as poor people would be more tempted to commit crimes in wealthier neighborhoods. I do think this police patrolling has racist roots since the poorer population in Washington D.C. is mostly black. Words like "renewal" and "redevelopment" hide the sad reality behind gentrification/

Ricardo Cabeza de Vaca's curator insight, May 25, 9:36 PM

I believe this article is very interesting because it shows how gentrification can change a neighborhood. I believe gentrification is a little bit of a negative thing because it adds geographical uniformity to our modern society and yes that could be good thing in measure. The article states now police patrol every street, Walmart's and 7-11's start showing up, areas will start becoming more aesthetically pleasing, but is that really a good thing? I believe that sometimes while you are driving by it is better to have a change in your surrounding, rather than seeing the same thing over and over again even if it is more modern.