population

Stemming Loss or Swelling Growth?

Generating population growth and stemming population loss create different winners and losers. Growth has enabled scientific collaborations, human comforts, and flourishing cities. What’s not to like?  By contrast, Edward Abbey cautions: “Growth for the sake of growth is the ideology of a cancer cell.”  What ends might population growth now serve? Is there too little …

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Who’s Less Likely to Stay in Pittsburgh?

In southwestern Pennsylvania, where population has steadily been shrinking, the people least likely to see a future in the region include those under the age of 30, African Americans and residents with higher levels of education, a regional survey suggests. More than 8 in 10 Allegheny County residents overall plan on being in the region …

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An Answer from Abroad

If southwestern Pennsylvania is going to pull out of its long population slump, it’s likely going to happen with people like Khara Timsina. He arrived in Pittsburgh 10 years ago, one of fewer than 300 Bhutanese refugees resettled from camps in Nepal, where they had lived after being driven from their homeland during a period …

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The Economics of Population

Last spring, the U.S. Census Bureau released data showing that the City of Pittsburgh and Allegheny County once again lost population. In what has become a ritual, public officials were pressed by reporters to respond. County Executive Rich Fitzgerald suggested not reading too much into the latest of a long string of down years. Pittsburgh …

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A Slow But Continuing Decline

Gavriel Popper-Keizer was living in sun-swept Santa Barbara when he decided to leave coastal California, where he’d spent most of his life. His girlfriend, Alison, also a lifelong Californian, was on board. The sense of adventure was appealing. Neither had a dream job they would regret leaving. And they had come to grips with the …

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A Lesson in Growth from Austin, Texas



With the U.S. Census Bureau reporting continuing populations losses for metropolitan Pittsburgh, the region is one of only a few “large” U.S. metros reporting losses, putting us in the company of Youngstown, Ohio and Altoona/Johnstown, Pa. This is not a good story. Companies often choose where to locate or expand in places people want to be. …

A Lesson in Growth from Austin, Texas

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Population Slips Again

The Pittsburgh region’s population continued to slide in 2017, falling to 2,333,367 people, according to recent population estimates from the U.S. Census Bureau. It marked the fifth consecutive year population has declined in the seven-county Pittsburgh Metropolitan Statistical Area. “The Pittsburgh region is a place that has suffered from a lot of population loss for …

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You’ve come a long way, city

The 2009 Mercer Quality of Living Survey ranks Pittsburgh 52nd in the world. This annual report aims at an international business audience and compares 215 cities based on 39 criteria. Among the most important are: Political/economic stability, safety, education, hygiene, recreation and transportation. Each city is indexed against New York (100). The top five cities …

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Life After (And With) Steel

With recession upon us and its attendant unease, taking stock is an unavoidable activity for people like me in the information business. The exercise is made more intense because the past 30 years in Pittsburgh have been times of high drama that attracted international attention and visitors coming to see for themselves. They ask about …

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