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Anchorage, Alaska, most diverse place in America

| August 22, 2018 | 0 Comments

In 2016, Anchorage, Alaska, was declared the most diverse city in the US. Many consider that claim to be even stronger today. Chad Farrell, a sociology professor at the University of Alaska called the area “the most diverse census tract in all of America” after the 2010 US Census. Farrell, in collaboration with other academics, analysed census data using mathematical formulas. “A district must be home to many different groups of people in relatively similar proportions to score highly on the diversity index, says Farrell. White, black, Hispanic/Latino, Alaska Native/American Indian, mixed race, Asian and Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander people live side by side in Anchorage. They comprise all seven demographic categories recognised by the government, in large numbers. Farrell looked at how Anchorage – and in particular, a neighbourhood called Mountain View – had managed to stay a stable community, rich in multiple heritages. He found that when people of other races moved in, the white community stayed put. This is unusual in many parts of the US. The economy in Anchorage is faring relatively well, driven by fishing and oil, so there are jobs to be had, although Farrell found that 39% of households as earning less than US$25 000 and 19% fall below the poverty line. “The trend for economic segregation has been upward; the trend for ethnic segregation has been down.” Anchorage has also welcomed refugees from war-torn places around the globe. People from the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Somalia, Cuba, Iran, Sudan and Bhutan are learning to love the snow. The town’s housing authority owns the land in Anchorage and provides affordable housing to citizens. Anchorage is also where one finds the three most diverse high schools across the US and the nation’s 19 most diverse primary schools.

Category: Winter 2018

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