Expensive Cities

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It’s tough to compare costs across cities in different countries, but this study tries to do just that. It’s trying to answer the question: What is the average cost of a weeklong holiday trip to selected cities? The question is subject to the predefined assumptions – The trip is for two adults staying in Airbnb, walking & public transit, and doing typical tourist daytime activities like visiting museums, shows, or day-trips.

The graphic above is color-coded by region. The range of costs across cities in the sample fit closely to a normal distribution with the majority of cities falling in the $1000-2000 cost window. Africa and Asia have most of the cheaper cities while Western Europe and Coastal cities in the USA are the most expensive to visit.

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Oil Prices 2017

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Above is a bar chart showing the break-even price for various oil-producing countries and OPEC. The ‘shale revolution’ has allowed the United States to produce a large portion its oil cheaper than any country in the world except Saudi Arabia. The dramatic fall in the price of oil (due in part to US production increase) hurts expensive ‘tar sands’ oil producing countries like Canada and Venezuela.

Tourism Rankings 2017

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The map above displays the world’s countries sized by international tourism receipts in 2017. The top ten can be seen in tabular view below:

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A few things jump out. The US gains more from international tourism than any other country by a factor of 3 and China spends more aboard than any other country by a factor of 2! Macau (ranked 9th) has three times the gambling revenue of Las Vegas, with much of this money origination in mainland China and spend ‘internationally’ in Macau. (Hong Kong ranks 11th with 33 billion in receipts in 2017) If Hong Kong, Macau, and Taiwan were counted as one country on this list, it would rank 2nd with 81 billion in receipts.

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3 Religious Worlds

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The map above is clustered into three groups depending on religious adherence: Magenta — the ‘Christian World’, Cyan — the ‘Muslum World’, and Yellow — the ‘Eastern World’. The darker the color, the higher the percentage of religious adherence. By total population: Magenta/Christians 2.4 billion (33%), Cyan/Muslim 1.8 billion (24%), and Yellow/Eastern 2.1 billion (29%)

Former USSR Population Change

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Above is map color coding the former USSR countries by population change from 1989 to 2018. Surprisingly, several nations have decreased in population over the past 30 years! The largest decrease comes from Georgia which has 31.44% less population than it did in 1989. Contrast this with Azerbaijan (just across the border) which as increased by 40.7% over the same time period. For comparison, the United State had a population of 246.8 million in 1989 and a population of 325.7 million today (31.9% increase).

FIFA World Cup Stats

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Above is map is displaying the number of top 4 finishes for each country in the World Cup (1930 – 2014). The size of the bubbles represents the number of top 4 finishes and is located in the geographic area of the country. Europe is colored blue, South America red, and North America green. This map is intended to display the concentration of top teams in Europe and South America — there has only been a few times ever that a team outside those two regions finished in the top 4. This same data is shown below in a bar chart.

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Below is the historical performance of the top 8 teams in the World Cup.

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Below is FIFA’s historical ranking for countries. The FIFA world ranking formula was created in 1993 and the average ranking from then until June 2018 is shown on the third column. Brazil is the worlds top team with an average ranking of 3rd, next Germany with an average of 5th — tied with Spain and Argentina.

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Top 50 Cities by GDP Comparision 2014

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Visit the link to interactively play with the data: https://public.tableau.com/profile/brad.ballard#!/vizhome/Top50CitiesbyGDPComparision/Dashboard

We often see lists of GDP by country, but rarely by city. This is puzzling because most countries are empty space and GDP output is concentrated in a few small areas. For example, about 50% of US GDP is generated on only 2% of its area – namely: cities. This is also the case around the world.

To put the importance of these 50 cities into perspective. The top 25 cities in the world generate 15.5 trillion dollars in GDP or 20.1% of total world GDP (2014 numbers). They do this with only 4.7% of world population and have a GDP per capita of 44 thousand dollars (4 times world average). The top 50 cities in the world generate 22.6 trillion dollars in GDP or 29.4% of total world GDP (2014 numbers). They do this with only 8.2% of world population and have a GDP per capita of 37 thousand dollars (3.5 times world average).

The GDP centers are clustered in geographic regions in North America, Western Europe, and Eastern Asia. Only a few cities are represented from the southern hemisphere and none from Africa or the Middle East. Asian cities tend to be larger in population, number of skyscrapers, and lower in GDP per capita. North American and Europen cities tend to have small-to-medium populations, low density, and a high GDP per capita.

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People in Poverty, then and now

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Above is two snapshots of the number of people living in extreme poverty for various countries around the world. Countries are colored by the geographic region they are in — East Asia & Pacific, South Asia, etc. The first snapshot is from 1993 and the other is 20 years later in 2013. What is striking the decrease in extreme poverty in China and for the East Asia/Pacific region generally. For a comparison, China and India have comparable population 1.4 billion and 1.3 billion respectively — however, China has been much more successful in lifting a much larger proportion of its citizens out of poverty; presumably due to double-digit GDP growth year after year over this period.

Another comparison: Africa has a population of 1.2 billion, again comparable in size to both India and China. Yet, the number of people in extreme poverty has actually increased over the past 20 years with the largest gains coming from Nigeria (Africa’s most populous country) and the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Economic growth numbers are typically hard to come by for many countries in Africa due to a large proportion of the workforce working in the informal economy (black market). Although, the poverty numbers (shown above) and the GDP per capita estimates (shown below) seem to indicate that African’s experienced negative GDP per capita growth throughout the 1970s, 1980s, and early 1990s.

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World Urbanization Prospects 2014

The following are highlights from the World Urbanization Prospects 2014 report published by the United Nations Department of Economic and Social Affairs

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Globally, 54% of the world population lives in an urban area with at least 500k people. (note: urban in purple, rural in grey) The world has become more urban over time and is projected to continue.

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Urbanization differs across regions, with North American and Europe being the most urbanized — Africa and Asia least urbanized.

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High-income countries tend to be more urban (80%) than low-income countries (30%) — implying that urbanization and development are related

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Urbanized areas are displayed below in various groups (ranging from small cities to megacities) for the years 1990, 2014, and projected 2030.

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Urbanized areas (500k+ population) in 2014 are displayed on the map below

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Other interesting notes:

Africa and Asia are home to 90% of the worlds rural population and have the lowest rate of urbanization by content 40% and 48%.

China, India, and Nigeria will account for 37% of urban pop growth between now and 2050.

One in eight people live in one of the world’s 28 megacities (10m+ pop)

Link to the full report here: https://esa.un.org/unpd/wup/publications/files/wup2014-highlights.pdf

US Average Daily Sunlight

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Above is a map measuring solar radiation per square meter, averaged to each county within the lower 48 states of the US. The units are a little difficult to translate, but the difference between the extremes (dark purple to light yellow) is a factor of two. This means that cities such as Los Angeles, Las Vegas, and Phoenix get about twice as much sunlight each day as Seattle, Portland, or Cleveland.