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"The Main Languages of Business in Africa."
While this is not a perfect map, it is still a powerful one to convey several points. One, the impact of colonialism is still felt in the the cultural, economic and political institutions of Africa. Two, given that most of African countries have many indigenous languages spoken by the population, the old colonial language remains as a de facto Lingua Franca in most places, especially among the elite.
Tags: language, Africa, colonialism.
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Who has the oil? http://pic.twitter.com/7Njc7OD8rw
Natural resources are not evenly distributed...this distribution pattern impacts global economics, industrialization, development and politics tremendously.
Tags: industry, economic, energy, resources.
Useful info graphic for use with climate change and society
Fascinating image showing global distribution of Oil resources.
Inequalities exist as well
"By the end of this year, digging could begin on a waterway that would stretch roughly 180 miles across Nicaragua to unite the Atlantic and Pacific oceans."
Today, the largest of the massive cargo ships are simply too big to get through the Panama Canal and have to travel down around the tip of South America; China is strategically working on strengthening their geopolitical position in the South China Sea and all international waters. This is one reason why a Chinese firms are planning to construct a canal to rival Panama's. This article highlights the reasons for concern (Maps 101 readers can read more about the geographic implications of Nicaragua's plans in this article co-authored by myself and Julie Dixon or you can sign up for a free trial subscription to see what else Maps 101 has to offer).
Tags: transportation, Nicaragua, globalization, diffusion, industry, economic.
This could be an economic boom for Nicaragua, one of the poorest countries in the Western Hemisphere. However, this construction could potentially cause serious problems. The proposed canal would pass through or near nature reserves and areas inhabited by indigenous groups. Also, it would pass through Lake Nicaragua, the largest fresh water lake in Central America. This lake holds fresh drinking water for the people and is home to rare fresh water species, such as the fresh water shark, which could be effected negatively by this construction.
Although this canal could turn Nicaragua’s economy around, it could also cause negative impacts on their environment.
The high-tech project would help officials decide which abandoned buildings can be demolished.
This crowd-sourced mapping project is an great example of how a community can work together (using geospatial technologies and geographic thinking) to mitigate some of the more pressing issues confronting the local neighborhoods. Many optimists have argued that Detroit has "good bones" to rebuild the city, but it needs to built on as smaller scale. This project helps to assess what is being used by residents and should stay, and what needs to go. Want to explore some of the data yourself? See Data Driven Detroit.
Tags: urban, unit 7 cities, housing, economic, poverty, place, socioeconomic, neighborhood, mapping, GIS, geospatial,
Will China win its 65-year war with Taiwan -- without firing a shot?
As one analyst quoted in this article says, the whole point of China's policy is to try to create an environment where the people are Taiwan want to be unified with mainland China. China has opened up economically towards Taiwan to foster this in "an offer they can't refuse." What would your position on this issue be if you were advising China, Taiwan or the United States?
Great resource for conflict resolution
In this map, all Zip codes with more than 500 people are ranked from 0 to 99 based on household income and education. The 'Super Zips' rank 95 or higher. The map at the top shows the highest concentration of the nation’s 650 Super Zips. The typical household income in a Super Zip is $120,272, and 68 percent of adults hold college degrees. That compares with $53,962 and 27 percent in the other zips mapped. Washington D.C. shows a powerful bifurcation: One-third of Zip codes in the D.C. area are considered ‘Super Zips’ for wealth and education and large swaths of the metropolitan area are considered food deserts.
This weekend I had the privilege of flying essentially from Boston to Washington DC at night and was mesmerized by the vast urban expanse beneath me. It was the greatest concentration of wealth in the United States as well as the some of the most blighted regions of the country. What explains the spatial patterns of highly concentrated wealth and poverty in the biggest cities? Are cities a causal factor in wealth and poverty creation? What does this zip code data tell us? What accounts for the spatial patterns in your region?
Tags: Washington DC, urban, unit 7 cities, housing, economic, poverty, place, socioeconomic, neighborhood.
See where the wealth and poverty are in America using this great map.
This picture shows the cocentrations of poverty and affluence. The areas hilighted in yellow show the areas which are wealthy and the dark blue showing the poor. This coincides with the amout of pay and the education levels in these countries. Areas such as Boston, New York and Washington show high cocentrations of affluence. These areas also have much higher education systems and more well -paid jobs. Countries which are highlighted in dark blue are countries with lesser education and lesser paid jobs. This shows the extent at which poverty can affect a country.
Facing religious discrimination in the Hindu-dominated job market, many are forced to assume fake identities.
This is not that uncommon in India unfortunately. As the articles states, a government commission was appointed in 2005 to investigate the degree to which Muslims were disadvantaged in social, economic and educational terms. The commission concluded the socio-economic condition of most Muslims was as bad as that of the Dalits, who are at the bottom rung of the Hindu-caste hierarchy, also referred to as the "untouchables."
Tags: labor, industry, economic, poverty, India.
I wonder if India will ever adopt any anti-discrimination legislation that will protect Muslims from prejudice. The partition of India and Pakistan was largely for religious, then political reasons, but the lived reality does not translate to all Muslims in Pakistan and all Hindus in India.
Hiding their idenity to get a job or to even live. Much like many Jewish people did to survive in Hitler's Germany. They pretened to be Catholic, Protestant anything but Jewish. They did what they had to do to survive. The same is gong on in India, not on the scale of genocide, concentration camps, forced labor, etc., but it still is a form of opperession of a minority group in the largest "democracy" in the world. It dates back to the partitiion of India after British rule. Many Muslims were forced to migrated to what was then either West or East Pakistan, which is now Bangledesh. Not all left. There are about 127,000,000 Muslims in Indian manking it the second largest population of Muslims behind Indonesia, that is a sizeable minority even in a country of over 1 billion. The nation overall would benefit from equality in the job maket in that there probably many skilled workers in a basically untouched labor pool. The US has regulations against hiring practices based on one's religious belief, as well as age, gender, race etc., it is something that India might take an example from. I know the US isn't perfect on its labor relations in the past, but we have been doing a good job as of late...though there are still lingering issues that will be solved giving time. I tink its time for India to start becasue it will take a long time for things to change when they at least started.
"A floating vessel that is longer than the Empire State Building is high has taken to the water for the first time. Despite appearances, Prelude cannot strictly be described as a ship as it needs to be towed to its destination rather than travelling under its own power."
This is a floating testament that economies of scale will continue to push the limits. Today, the largest of the massive cargo ships are simply too big to get through the Panama Canal and have to travel down around the tip of South America. This is one reason why Nicaragua is planning to construct a canal to rival Panama's (Maps 101 readers can read more about the geographic implications of Nicaragua's plans in this article co-authored by myself and Julie Dixon or you can sign up for a free trial subscription to see what Maps 101 has to offer).
The Worlds biggest ship to be launched soon by Shell is an amazing feat, created by human ingenuity. It is incredible that it is longer than the Empire state building. it is difficult to imagine how an object so long even moves by itself. Nicaragua is attempting to make a canal Bigger than Panamas to support a ship thate size of the prelude that will operate off the coast of Australia for the next 25 years. The fact that it needs to be towed to its destination makes one question if its really a ship or not. Regardless Shell will share the cost of the Oil vessell once its finished being built
Wow, this is interesting! I can't believe its that long! I wonder how long it took them to build it? Also, where is it going? Also, why would they need it to be so big? Why can't they just use a smaller ship and make more trips? But overall this is very cool.
I've got a weak spot for massive ships, plain and simple. I think there's even a future in ship-based cities which move around the world's oceans. Eventually ships can become so large and so advanced that the normal threats associated with the open ocean will do little to scratch them. For a comparison, the ship pictured is the Prelude FLNG, and it's almost twice the length of the Titanic.
If you've never been to Detroit and only know what you see in the news, a story about the city's future could seem confusing. Detroit is bankrupt.
Yes, the news about Detroit has been grim, as de-industrialization has negatively impacted this region more than any other in the United States. Still, many consider Detroit's economic problems akin to flesh wounds and organ failure. Extending the analogy, they see Detroit as having 'good bones,' something to build on for a new future. This article represents some visions of that new future.
Tags: urban, economic, industry, Detroit.
2033 seems pretty hopeful for the city that was once the Ford motor capital and the city of Rock and Roll. It is interesting to note in this article the various before and after images and the way they hope that this bankrupt city be look in 15 years. There are hopes to completely transform certain landscapes and renovate old warehouses for recreational/educational purposes. There is hope for the city of Detroit as developers continue planning and working on investing money making condemned areas livable and changing the economic culture of each neighborhood.
Looking at these pictures it it is amzaing to think that by 2033 Detroit could look like this. However I think the most confusing part to me would be where the money is coming from to rebuild this city. The city was recently declared bankrupt. How is it that they are going to be able to afford the billions of dollars needed to get detroit to this point? However if the plan does go well and detroit ends up building all of these attraction sites and educational building I believe that Detroit will no longer have a fear of debt, and the culture there would be a lot different. I think this would be a place that families and people vaction to. There would be many nice state parks to visit, a beautiful downtown area with hotels and other attractions. This is the exacct opposite of the type of experience you would have going to Detriot today. By making these changes and moving forward I think there is a huge culture change to will occur for the better of Detroit. If they can pull it off I don't think Detriot will have to worry about bankruptcy in the future.
"I recently saw this map in a Washington Post article about modern day slavery and was immediately was struck by the spatial extent and amount of slaves in today’s global economy. As stated in that article, “This is not some softened, by-modern-standards definition of slavery. These 30 million people are living as forced laborers, forced prostitutes, child soldiers, child brides in forced marriages and, in all ways that matter, as pieces of property, chattel in the servitude of absolute ownership.” This map shows some important spatial patterns that seem to correlate to economic and cultural factors."
This Washington Post article got me thinking about the geographies of supply chains. The growing spread of the informal economy (a.k.a.-illicit trade, black market, etc.) has created opportunities for exploitation. Many argue that free trade was created this power differential between the laborers who create these mass-manufactured products and the global consumers. These critics argue that fair-trade, not free trade, with lead to sustainable economic growth and minimize social injustice. Here is a NY Times article about how Mauritania is now confronting it's slavery past and present.
Questions to Ponder: What economic and cultural forces are needed for slavery to thrive? What realistically could be done to lessen the amount of slavery in the world today? How are your spending habits part of the system?
Additionally, this TED video (archived on scoop.it here) is a chilling glimpse into the worst and darkest side of the global labor system.
Tags: labor, economic, class, poverty.
The under ground ecnomy can be a dark thing, with many illicet black markets for durgs, women, hitmen, and clearly slaves. In todays world while slavery is no where near as common as a century ago, it is still happening on a daily baisis in countries that dont have the resorces to protect all its citizens from that life. Its discusting how people have been foced to live there lives like this for so long, that now more than ever we need to put a stop to the habbits that encourage this like big corperations with focred labor and many more, then the world will be free of slavery.
For slavery to thrive you need a big business to produce goods for and a large amount of people to actually do the work for little or no pay. We can try to eliminate by having machines produce goods or paying the workers more and giving them better working conditions. Our spending habits are some what responsible because these slaves our producing our products for us for very cheap.
In my opinion slavery is the worst possible living situation. id rather be be free but have no food suply than to be a slave. its dishearting to look at these numbers and see that 30 million people have to deal with the worst quality of live possible. but what sickens me the most is the lack of information we have been given about this though primary schools. In school we were taught about Lincoln freeing the slaves ans american slavery almost every year. But not a single time did they connect or even touch on that it is a massive problem in the world today. It was to the extend that for a few years i was mislead to thinking that Lincoln made this a slave free world, boy was i wrong. Slavery is revesable though, it can be countered by harser punishments and more restrictions on the slave owners. We could also do our best to make it so they bring in as little money as possible so they are forced to find a different occupation.
“This is where the talent wants to live”
I believe there is a new class of city emerging across the country which are positioned to succeed in the coming decade – a class of city that has not yet been identified on a national scale. This city is a small/mid-sized regional center.
Interesting idea - I wonder if it will take hold. Worth watching -
"This is a ship-shipping ship, shipping shipping ships." http://geographyeducation.org/2013/10/14/ship-shipping-ships/
The two industries that are the real backbone of globalization are transportation and communication. What has accelerated the pace of global interconnectedness is the scale of these devices and their ubiquity in facilitating massive global commerce. Economies of scale infuse our transportation and communicating technologies, boosting the diffusion of countless other technologies. China's transportation infrastructure, for example has undergone some amazing physical transformations that have made their economic growth possible. If, however, you only want to laugh at the tongue-twister of ship-shipping ships shipping shipping ships, this is the internet meme for you.
Tags: transportation, globalization, diffusion, industry, economic.
First, this is a fantastic photo...a freighter shipping other freighters. As my colleague Seth Dixon points out, this is a fantastic image of one of the important drivers of the acceleration of globalization in recent history.
Pretty sure that doesn't fit in the panama canal
The two industries that are the real backbone of globalization are transportation and communication. What has accelerated the pace of global interconnectedness is the scale of these devices and their ubiquity in facilitating massive global commerce.
Where did your T-Shirt come from? Where did the food your parents bought at the grocery store come from? What's the origin of the components in your cell phone? These questions all allude to what geographers call a commodity chain analysis. Analyzing where the consumer goods that we use every day came from can make global issues hit a little closer to home and reinforce concepts such as globalization. The website Follow the Things is a great resource for teaching students about commodity chains and mapping out your own personal geographies.
Tags: industry, economic, globalization, consumption.
Great website by colleague Ian Cook at Exeter University
About Globalisation, flows and production today.
Where did your T-Shirt come from? Where did the food your parents bought at the grocery store come from? What's the origin of the components in your cell phone? These questions all allude to what geographers call a commodity chain analysis. Analyzing where the consumer goods that we use every day came from can make global issues hit a little closer to home and reinforce concepts such as globalization. The website Follow the Things is a great resource for learning about commodity chains and mapping out your own personal geographies.
The Boston-Washington corridor, home to 18 percent of Americans, produces more economic activity than Germany.
"Until the Great Depression, nobody talked about 'the economy.' In a sense, it hadn't been invented yet."
This podcast is a great discussion on historical evolution of some standard economic measures; it is also a nice reminder that statistics such as GDP don't represent a tangible thing, but are a shaped by how we think about the world around us.
Seth Dixon's insight:This podcast is a great discussion on historical evolution of some standard economic measures; it is also a nice reminder that statistics such as GDP don't represent a tangible thing, but are a shaped by how we think about the world around us.
A little history here, What we call the GDP is not really scientific #GDP #NationalIncome #indicator #health
Seth Dixon has it right.
What is blue, a quarter of a mile long, and taller than London's Olympic stadium? The answer - this year's new class of container ship, the Triple E. When it goes into service this June, it will be the largest vessel ploughing the sea. Each will contain as much steel as eight Eiffel Towers and have a capacity equivalent to 18,000 20-foot containers (TEU).
These containers are symbols of global commerce that enable economies of scale to be profitable and the outsourcing of so many manufacturing jobs to developing countries. The invention of these containers have changed the geography of global shipping and the vast majority of the world's largest ports are now in East Asia. Today though, the biggest container ships are too big to go through the Panama Canal, encouraging China to build a larger canal through Nicaragua.
Consumed in Europe these container ships have the amount of steel of 8 Efile Towers in one container. It is a quarter mile long and taller than that of the Olympic stadium in London.
In the 20 years since it entered into force, the North American Free Trade Agreement has been both lauded and attacked in the United States. But to properly assess NAFTA’s record, it is important to first be clear about what the agreement has actually done. Economically speaking, the answer is a lot.
NAFTA was the first comprehensive free-trade agreement to join developed and developing nations, and it achieved broader and deeper market openings than any trade agreement had before.
NAFTA did that by eliminating tariffs on all industrial goods, guaranteeing unrestricted agricultural trade between the United States and Mexico, opening up a broad range of service sectors, and instituting national treatment for cross-border service providers. It also set high standards of protection for patents, trademarks, copyrights, and trade secrets.
NAFTA ignited an explosion in cross-border economic activity. Today, Canada ranks as the United States’ largest single export market, and it sends 98 percent of its total energy exports to the United States, making Canada the United States’ largest supplier of energy products and services. Mexico is the United States’ second-largest single export market. Over the past two decades, a highly efficient and integrated supply chain has developed among the three North American economies. Intraregional trade flows have increased by roughly 400 percent.
North Americans not only sell more things to one another; they also make more things together. About half of U.S. trade with Canada and Mexico takes place between related companies, and the resulting specialization has boosted productivity in all three economies. NAFTA has also caused cross-border investment to soar.
In spite of this impressive economic record, NAFTA has its critics. Most of those who attack it on economic grounds focus on Mexico, not Canada, and claim that the partnership is one-sided: that NAFTA is Mexico’s gain and America’s pain. But the economic data prove otherwise.
A good review for those concerned about the Trans-Pacific Partnership.
"Changes in relationships can be hard to take. The economic bond between Latin America and Spain, its biggest former colonial power, is shifting as the region’s economies mature. Despite some ruffled feathers, the evolution is positive. After two decades in which Spain amassed assets worth €145 billion ($200 billion) in Latin America, last year was the first in which Latin American companies spent more on acquiring their Spanish counterparts than the other way around."
I am hesitant to use the term post-colonial since there are theoretical constructs that use that term to embody cultural hegemonic power structures. I'm simply using it to mean "after colonialism" because the power paradigm is shifting to the former colonies.
Tags: Latin America, South America. economic, development, Spain, historical, colonialism.
Post- Coloonial Economical Gographies- It is important to remember that in the past Latin American companies spent less on acquiring the Spanish counterparts and last year for the first time they have shifted in which Latin America spent more acquriring their Spanish counterparts. After teo decades Spain's worth would be close to $200 billion in Latin America. Latin America in relation to Spain is very different because gears have shifted in order fot the net worth to compile to where it is today. The same goes for Spain in relation to Latin America.
This article describes the changing relationship between Latin America and its former colonial power, Spain. Latin America shares a cultural bond with Spain which is influencing how the Latin American economies develop. This cultural bond, along with the economies, are having an effect on migration.
As Latin American countries are becoming increasingly industrialized their economies have grown and Latin America is frequently looking at Spain for a place to invest due to their cultural similarities, like language. Latin America is investing in Spanish business while Spain, in an economic slump at home, is benefiting from Latin American markets and investments. Unsurprisingly, over the past several years trade between the Spain and Latin America has become more and more profitable for Latin America as their increasing industrial power can send manufactured products to a more deindustrialized Spain.
The economic slump in Spain is seeing Spaniards migrate away from their home country. Latin America, with its cultural similarity, is increasingly becoming a destination for these Spaniards in need of work due to the growing economies of Latin American countries. Some migrations may even be the result of Latin American investors owning a large portion of a Spanish worker's company in the first place.
This flip in economic power is unsurprisingly since it would be impossible for Spain to keep pace with its former colonies collectively. Though depleted by colonization, there are still significant resources available to Latin America, chief among them cheap agricultural labor and massive amounts of fertile land. Even with friction over their colonial past with Spain, Latin America is still investing in Spain and Spaniards still look to Latin America for work and investment opportunities.
The unsung hero of the global economy: the shipping container.
NPR's Planet Money has produced an 8-part series following the commodity chain of the T-Shirt. This series explores cotton production, textile mills, sweatshops, outsourcing and in this podcast, the transportation infrastructure that moves goods globally. This podcast touches on the same topic as one of my favorite TED talks, how containerization enabled globalization.
Tags: transportation, industry, economic, globalization, technology, podcast.
loved this series - a must see and must listen.
Shipping containers has helped mordern globalization in many ways. The amount of trade we do with other countries allows for a cheaper process. The amount of items we can trade now because of containerization is way more than we did with trucks.
The railroad industry is eager to be the go-to oil shipper, but some worry it's moving too fast.
Many hoping to stop environmental degradation of Canada's Tar Sands and the Dakotas "Kuwait on the Prairie" have opposed the construction of the Keystone XL pipeline. It's been decades since crude oil has been shipped by rail in the United States but fracking technologies have opened up areas without oil pipelines to become major producers. As demonstrated in this NPR podcast, the railroad industry has seized on this vacuum and since 2009 has been supplying the oil industry the means to get their product to the market.
Tags: transportation, industry, economic, energy, resources, environment, environment modify.
The idea of using trains instead of oil pipelines in the North Dakota regions is smart, over the idea of the time and energy it takes to transport oil through pipes. Big industry always causes parts of the enviornment to suffer but the lesser of the evils must be chosen. In the area of shipping oil on trains it is the sandy prarie like areas that can suffer physically. With oil business fracking has also been a big issue were rocks deep beneath the ground are broken up to release oil up to the surface. Yes this brings companies lots of money, but causes harm to homes, leaking oil, causing explosions and even earthquakes. This can be tricky especially when these kinds of companies are supported by the federal government
"Forward on climate?" This news is backwards and at least 40,000 people who attended "Forward on Climate" rallies throughout our nation in February 2013 will continue to question, protest peacefully, and convince others that we MUST reduce our dependence on oil no matter how it is transported!
As steel and rail built this county, oil and rail will rebuild it.
Where you live is important. It can dictate quality of schools and hospitals, as well as things like cancer rates, unemployment, or whether the city repairs roads in your neighborhood. On this week's show, stories about destiny by address.
This hour-long podcast addresses some has key issues in urban geography by exploring the history of redlining, the Fair Housing Act and other fair housing initiatives. The urban cultural mosaic of the United States and the neighborhoods of our cities have been greatly shaped by these issues. Currently gentrification is reshaping many U.S. cities and fits into the wider scope of the issues raised in the podcast.
Tags: housing, racism, urban, economic, poverty, place, socioeconomic, neighborhood, ethnicity, race, podcast.
this podcast can gives us insight into other peoples experiences and decision making processes in choosing were to live and how that effects life for them. Depending on where we live rent may be cheaper but also living conditions and employment may not be all that great. Gentrification or community improvement also shows us, this renovating process helps change our old neighborhoods and tries to create better places for people to life, it speaks about fair housing and the various experiences that people have in the American way of living.
PODCAST FOR URBAN UNIT
From Deutsche Asset & Wealth Management.
This is an interesting map that uses color to show us economic differences nationwide. The red stands for bad and the green is fo r better economic regions. Southern parts of Texas appear to be above average and also georgia and the Carolinas. It is interesting that MA was red in terms of below national average. I was also impressed that Minesota was Green on the Above average this map is a quick fact lens into national conditions giving us a glimpse of the current state in our country.
This article is on the economy of North America. It includes a map of the economic activity in the United States
The Maldives is a small country in the Indian Ocean composed of 1,200 islands. Virtually every spot in this country is under 8 feet in elevation. Pictured above is the capital of Malé, which has the largest population (explore these islands on a variety of scales).
Questions to Ponder: What physical forces and processes account for the presence of these islands in the Ocean? In a geological time scale, what does the future hold for these islands. What would be the main economic assets of the Maldives? What would be the main economic and environmental concerns of this country?
Tags: density, sustainability, economic, environment, environment adapt, climate change, urban ecology.
The Maldives is an interesting country located in the Indian Ocean. It was not originally made up of the 1200 islands that it has now. Many of those islands are uninhabited and miniscule on a map. The country is dominated by tourism which is important for the country. What is also important to the country is its geographical future. Many of the islands might vanish in years to come because of rising sea levels. New islands can form as well as so many already have. The future of this country merely relies on what is happening underwater.
The photos we viewed in class have inspired me to add this to the list of places to visit over the course of my lifetime. The accomplishment of building up such a small piece of land on this scale is somewhat rare and often reserved for megacities on the larger continents.
Maldives might be hard to keep for many years due to the fact that it is in the middle of the ocean. Eventually overtime the waves would ruin whatever is on that land. It does not seem like a pratical place to live.
Bob Simon reports on the decline of America's former industrial capital and the people determined to bring it back
Detroit is the largest city to declare bankruptcy and more importantly the first major American city to essentially fail as a major metropolitan area. Sections of the city are reminiscent of a post-apocalyptic bestselling novel: 80,000 buildings stand empty, 40% of the streetlights don’t work, and it routinely takes police one hour to respond to a 911 call.
Tags: urban, economic, industry, Detroit.
The Detroit "Renaissance" is an interesting one to say the least. There is an obvious opportunity to lay the foundations for something new and bold after clearing the rubble that has become detroit. But who is going to be displaced once the rubble's cleared and the trendy cafes, art studios, and co-ops are erected? Who amongst the poor and already displaced will be held up high, encouraged, and supported to help create this new Detroit? Cutting costs from health care and pensions, from those who already live in this city and are struggling, doesn't sound particularly productive. Especially after referencing having posession of extremely valuable art pieces that could be sold off. This article really sheds a light on the pro's and con's that are associated in capital investment in a bankrupt and wartorn American city.I don't think that the poor and hungry care about paint on a canvas. They need access to opportunity and the resources to seize it.
"Portland is a city that some residents praise as a kind of eden: full of bike paths, independently-owned small businesses, great public transportation and abundant microbreweries and coffeeshops. And then there’s a whole other city. It’s the city where whole stretches of busy road are missing sidewalks, and you can see folks in wheelchairs rolling themselves down the street right next to traffic. It’s the city where some longtime African-American residents feel as if decades of institutional racism still have not been fully addressed."
Portland, Oregon is often discussed as a magnet for a young demographic that wants to be part of a sustainable city that supports local businesses and agriculture. This podcast looks behind that image (which has a measure of truth to it) to see another story. Relining, gentrification, poverty, governance and urban planning are all prominent topics in this 50 minute podcast that provides as fascinating glimpse into the poorer neighborhoods of this intriguing West Coast city. When in cities, we often use the term sustainability to refer to the urban ecology, but here we see a strong concern for the social sustainability of their historic neighborhoods as well.
Tags: neighborhood, gentrification, urban, place, culture, economic, race, poverty, place, socioeconomic.
Recently I came across a craigslist post from a gentleman who was trying to rally individuals to Portland with him for a journey on the "Michigan Trail" to Detroit. He made promise that the intention was to perform rejuvinating work in Detroit alongside it's current residents and that there would be "no gentrification." Not that I found these statements or intentions to be profound or useful in anyway, but this podcast really put a nail in the coffin for me. The effects of gentrification are well known for both their positive and negative aspects. But the bottom line is this, regardless of intention the poor and diverse populations will be displaced unless it is from them that this renaissance takes place. Not Portlandia hipsters looking for some sort of "promise land." Portland apparentely has it's own issues with gentrification and a class of social and cultural norms that make it difficult to make the case for cities on the rise to take the same path.
I don't think that Earth offers everything for everyone. Given the situation of predetermination about birthplace and essentially upbringing, social class, and outcomes, in an infinite universe (infinite until proven otherwise), a single small planet cannot possibly offer us everything we are destined to need in the universe, let alone the towns that we are limited to. I do not believe in choice, I believe in destiny... I do not blame people for racism or crimes, as HORRIBLE as they may be. I think that people are made into what they are by the world around them, in existential and defining ways. Yeah, there is plenty of room for improvement and change in Oregon, but realistically, there is also more room for improvement in other areas too. I don't really see humans as the sort of people that will ever get better without some sort of divine intervention. I am taking the perspective of separation of paradise and purgatory that was mentioned in this article, and applying it to a different scale, but I do believe that mankind is to be condemned by the universe, due to its faults and inability to play well with others. The world freaks out when kidnapping victims are found after a decade of abuse and captivity, but this same world breeds animals for slaughter and consumption... Earthlings clearly have been taught to not care about those that are different, whether in looks or species... I think the kidnapping situation is vile and appalling, but I also think that breeding species for slaughter (which affects more living beings) is democratically more of an issue.