13 Georgia cities are positioned for economic advancement in the next decade

Financial website Lendedu.com has released a list of the 400 U.S. cities that are best positioned for economic advancement in the next decade.

Analyzing a variety of socioeconomic factors like recent income growth, population changes, and educational attainment levels for hundreds of cities in the United States, Lendedu ranked each based on how well positioned it is for economic advancement in the new decade.

Georgia earned high marks in the survey, with 13 cities making the list. Atlanta and Savannah made the top 20, while Athens made the top 50.

Georgia’s cities were ranked as follows:

#12 Atlanta
#17 Savannah
#48 Athens
#108 Gainesville
#145 Columbus
#149 Valdosta
#154 Augusta
#196 Warner Robbins
#199 Rome
#240 Brunswick
#289 Albany
#312 Hinesville
#323 Dalton

The data that was used to develop this report came from two data sources: The U.S. Census Bureau and the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Every data point other than unemployment rate statistics came from the former, while that one came from the latter.

In total, 380 of the largest metropolitan areas in the United States had data for each data point and were analyzed for the report’s rankings. For two data points, the percent change in the employment-to-population ratio and the percent change in unemployment rate, multiple years had to be individually pulled to complete the final calculation that was used in this report. Almost all of the data that came from the U.S. Census Bureau was pulled from the American Community Survey.

The following data points were used to evaluate each city:

  • Percentage of 18-24 Year Old Population With At Least an Associate’s Degree: The percentage of a city’s 18-24 year old population that holds at least an Associate’s Degree (Source: U.S. Census Bureau; seen in table as “% of Pop. 18-24 Yrs. W/ Min, of Assoc. Degree”).
  • Net Business Openings: The net amount of businesses that have opened in each city from 2015 to 2016. Closed businesses were subtracted from opened businesses during that time (Source: U.S. Census Bureau; seen in table as “Net Business Openings (’15-’16)”).
  • Net Population Change: The net population change in each city from 2010 to 2018. People leaving each city and mortality statistics were subtracted from people moving into each city and birth statistics during that time (Source: U.S. Census Bureau; seen in table as “Net Population Change (’10-’18)”).
  • Percent Change in Income: The percent change in average income in each city from 2017 to 2018 (Source: U.S. Census Bureau; seen in table as “% Change in Income (’17-’18)”).
  • Number of Residential Building Permits: The number of residential building permits in each city in 2018 (Source: U.S. Census Bureau; seen in table as “# of Res. Building Permits in 2018”).
  • Percent Change in Employment to Population Ratio: The percent change in the employment to population ratio in each city from 2015 to 2017 (Source: U.S. Census Bureau; seen in table as “% Change in Employment to Pop. Ratio (’15-’17)”).
  • Percent Change in Unemployment Rate: The percent change in the unemployment rate in each city form 2015 to 2019 (Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics; seen in table as “% Change in Unemployment Rate (’15-’19)”).

To complete the rankings, each individual city was ranked amongst its peers for each individual data point. After that was completed, each city’s respective rankings for each of the six data points were averaged together to formulate an overall ranking for each city.

You can view the complete report here.

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