All posts tagged: Urban Planning

Employment and Urbanization

Continuing with Regression Modelling in Practice… If you have been following along with my work, you will know that I am interested in the relationship between urbanization and economic development and am posing the general question of whether urbanization drives economic growth? Through the past two courses, Data Analysis Tools and Data Management and Visualization, I looked at the correlation between urbanization and economic development and established that there was a correlation between urban population and GDP per capita. For this assignment, I decided to look at another measure of economic development – employment rate. However, because data for 2010 is unavailable for some of the new variables I wanted to include, I decided to use data from the year 2007. It is the most recent year where I get the most data for all my variables. For each of the variables, I downloaded data directly from Gapminder and extracted the relevant information for 2007 and compiled a new CSV file. I define my response variable as Employment Rate in 2007. Now that my data …

The Moderating Variable

Last Lesson in Data Analysis Tools… If you have not read my previous posts, I am currently enrolled in a Data Analysis Specialization with Wesleyan University through Coursera. With data from Gapminder, I am exploring a broad and basic question: does urbanization drive economic growth? For those of you interested in reading my literature review to gain a background on this project, please visit this page. This is the last lesson in the Data Analysis Tools course. After analyzing for correlations between variables, this assignment focuses on moderating variables. A moderating variable is one that influences the strength and direction of the association between the explanatory and response variables. Last time, I established that there were correlations between the amount of urbanization, as measured by percentage of total population in cities with over 1 million people, urban population growth, and GDP per capita. Additionally, I found that there was a correlation between total populations in cities and urban population growth. I suspect that one of these two variables might be a moderating variable. I first looked at total …

A Revelation…Through ANOVA

Now that I finished the first course in the Data Analysis and Interpretations Specialization, this is the start of the second called Data Analysis Tools.  If you have not read my previous posts, I am currently enrolled in a Data Analysis Specialization with Wesleyan University through Coursera. With data from Gapminder, I am exploring a broad and basic question: does urbanization drive economic growth? For those of you interested in reading my literature review to gain a background on this project, please visit this page. Since I have been presenting my SAS work in the previous course, I will be presenting my Python work for this course. I actually enjoy working with Python, it seems to have more flexibility and I am more used to its language, having some experience with R during graduate school. As always, I am also including the other set of code for reference, so please see my SAS code at the very bottom of the post. There will be two parts to this presentation. The first part will be a discussion of …

Data Visualization Assignment 1 – That Urbanization Thing

“When you are that curious about the world, scholarship never ends.” – October 18, 2015 As I mentioned in my last post, I started the Data Analysis and Interpretations Specialization with Coursera in order to gain more skills relevant to my pursuit of urban studies and interest in urban planning and development. Our assignment for the first week is to develop a research question based on the data sets provided by the course or another data set of our own choice. With my background and interest in cities, I looked through the code books for each data set looking for relevant data. I decided that the Gapminder data set had the information I needed to look into the effects of urbanization globally. Though the scale is on a national level, which can obscure many relationships, particularly the distinction between rural and urban areas and their respective economies, I look forward to comparing the general trends and effects of urbanization. The increasing rate of urbanization has been accompanied by a corresponding rise in number of urban …

Learning and Growing! Internship and Coursera Specialization!

Last week, I started my internship with WLM Financial – a real-estate brokerage. With my interest in urban planning and development and my background in the social sciences, it appears to be a good fit to work as their Marketing Intern. I was quickly integrated into the marketing team and I am happy to say that the owners have been very trusting and gave me a great opportunity to learn. They have taught me a great deal in the past week about mortgages and real-estate. They are always open to questions and really took me under their wings. I look forward to learning more about the real-estate industry and about business development. Though I am only an intern, my opinions were valued and contributed to the direction the company is taking. Using my skills with ArcGIS, I took the initiative located our target audiences. I integrated demographic data with geospatial data from the U.S. Census Bureau to reveal locations where our target audience might be located. I was quickly able to locate ten cities in …

The Mental Acrobatics of Space

Space has always fascinated me. It is something we experience constantly, but few would pause to give thought about. As a child, I built castles and moats out of rocks and mud. I drew imaginary and fantastic maps. I created cities out of Lego and origami. Yet, I never truly understood the spatial arrangements and relationships between objects. To be honest, despite going to graduate school I still do not completely understand them. In my humble opinion, I believe the interactions between psychology, design, and planning have been quite weak. Why do we prefer smooth edges and straight lines? Why do we have preferences for certain spatial arrangements? Why are certain places more attractive than others, even if they are designed similarly? Why do we prefer to be in the middle of spaces as opposed to the edges? How do we use the space around us and why are some spaces more utilized than others? Certainly, part of the answers to these questions depend on not only personal preferences but also historical and cultural background – …

Glendale Historic Downtown Redesign

Glendale Historic Downtown Redesign was an urban redevelopment and design project for the city of Glendale, Arizona. With an aging population and a struggling economy, Glendale has been trying to revitalize its downtown core for years (culminating in the hosting of Superbowl XLIX). This project was an attempt to address these issues by developing a plan, through development and policy, that will benefit parts of the historic downtown. Under the guidance of Professor Emily Talen and Dr. Michael Powe, we followed the Preservation Green Lab‘s methodology in examining neighborhood physical characteristics through a combined measure of building age, building diversity, and lot size. Using grid overlay analysis, we incorporated demographic data from the U.S. Census Bureau and identified and presented a neighborhood that had the greatest potential for revitalization through existing policy and design. In addition, we conducted field observations of the study area. Some of the issues we found was the lack of consistent frontage which reduced the physical attractiveness of the area. There was a lack of mix-used buildings, with would serve to bring residents and businesses together. In addition, …