Friday, December 23, 2016

U.S. Urban-Centered Mega-Regions

National Geographic reports an excellent job with a new version of an idea I included in my text starting with version 2.0. This is that much of macroeconomics is about where you live.

So check out this article entitled “Four Million Commutes Reveal New U.S. ‘Megaregions’”. I do think they need a better editor: it’s not the megaregions that are new, but rather the use of four million commutes to map that out.

Anyway, they produced this map:


Each line on here is someone’s commute. The shading is chosen to indicate the hubs for commuting that have evolved because this is an emergent process. Those are based on an algorithm rather than personal preferences. Interestingly, it determined something that most Cedar City and St. George residents know, but that seems lost on SUU administrators and Utah state officials: we’re in the Las Vegas megaregion, not the Salt Lake City one. If SUU feels like an afterthought across the state, now you know why.

This is based on an academic article entitled “An Economic Geography of the United States: From Commutes to Megaregions” that appeared on PLOS|one. That’s not required, but even so it has lots of maps that even an uninterested reader might find interesting.

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