A poll from Gallup Wellbeing uses a range of metrics to delineate the ‘Best US State for Future Livability’, which is of course a very broad categorization, but interesting nonetheless. The top ten states in the rankings:
Compare this to the bottom rankings:
Perhaps not all of your top picks on where to live, or your bottom for that matter? A closer inspection of methods shows the devil in the details. The “… 13 metrics encompassing economic, workplace, community, and personal choices Gallup used to assess the future livability of 50 states. The findings are based on the results of over 530,000 interviews with U.S. adults conducted Jan. 2, 2011, through June 30, 2012, as a part of Gallup Daily tracking and the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index. Previous results focusing on the best future region in the U.S. recently appeared in Business Insider as well as Gallup.com and the Gallup Business Journal.”
It brings up questions about methodology and also what defines livability in general. Methodologically, that’s a pretty good sample, especially for a gallup poll – but i did not dig into the nitty gritty details. In defining livability, do the metrics make sense? The key metrics of job and economic stability are definitely important I would argue for stability, but not necessarily livability. But maybe stability = livability in some people’s minds?
The idea of optimism is another that is tough to discern. Is one optimistic because you are genuinely content, or because you don’t know better. Depends on your definition of what is livable – but if you can be living in North Dakota, where i lived for over 20 years, and be optimistic, content, and employed, maybe that’s worth crappy winters, bad food, sports, hunting, and the like.
But Utah, huh? I don’t think so.