A comparison of the interconnectivity of a city and the wealth of their citizens (GDP/person) to show how international connections and the wealth of the citizens are correlated.
y-axis: GDP/Person | x-axis: Interconnectivity (measures the degree to which the cities are connected internationally) size = population | color = continent | (behind Shanghai are hidden Peking and Bangkok)
- Connectivity Data: Global Network Service Connectivities for 315 Cities in 2000, derived by the ‘services values matrix‘, date: 2000
- GDP/Person & Population: Wikipedia
Tool used: Raw
Background and Thoughts
When I was researching Chinese history I found it astonishing that Shanghai has more connections and ties to other major cities of the world than it has to small cities in the Chinese mainland. As there is a huge gap in wealth distribution between the big cities of China and the small ones I wanted to know if there can be found a correlation between interconnectivity of the cities and the wealth of their citizens. As you can see from the graph there is a correlation between the two factors.
Unfortunately the data is not the newest, as it is from the year 2000. It would be interesting if and how the correlation changes over time. Also it would be great to have a bigger dataset. And to compare cities to towns and the countryside.
The question of causation is also quite interesting: Is there a causation between interconnectivity and wealth? On a personal or a national level? There is an interesting book by Richard Florida which explores the subject of the influence of the place of living on the individual in detail: „Who’s Your City?“ (there is also this website about the subject). He argues that the place where you live has a big influence on an individual as it determines which resources you have access to (internet, knowledge, etc) and the people that you meet.