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Issue Date: July 2011


How We Rate: Source List

People & places

Population: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Age: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Family Size: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Race: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Snow: Forbes.com, Jan. 12, 2011; based on 50 years of snowfall data from National Climatic Data Center

Median Household Income: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Gayness: The Advocate, February 2011; The magazine identified a number of gay signifiers for each city, assigned points for each, added them up and divided the raw scores by the population.

Born in the U.S.: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

'Land Mass: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Home

Home Buying: CNNMoney, 2011; based on the share of income Americans are paying to own a home and the cost of owning versus renting

Affordable Rent: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Affordable Housing: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Cost to Coast: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

This Old House: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Vacant Housing: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Owner-Occupied Homes: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Work

How We Spend Our Days: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Job Market: Monster.com, Jan. 21, 2011; ranking based on the relative abundance of job openings for the given local workforce

Commuting: Kiplinger's Personal Finance, 10 Best Cities for Commuters, 2011; based on population, average commute time, yearly congestion cost per commuter, average length of commute, cost of regular gas, yearly delays per commuter, yearly fuel waste per commuter and public transit users

Telecommuting: AOL Daily Finance (dailyfinance.com), The 11 Best Cities for Commuters, Dec. 2, 2010; Visit dailyfinance.com for more information.

Romance

Finding Love: The Daily Beast (thedailybeast.com), Feb. 6, 2011, "50 Best Cities for Love"; For more information, visit thedailybeast.com.

Dating: Axe deodorant "America's Best and Worst Cities for Dating" survey; The 2009 survey used 24 distinct criteria that included but was not limited to population density, percentage of singles, frequency of hooking up (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention information about frequency of sexual partners), dating venues (coffee shops, bars), intimate apparel stores, and flowers and jewelry bought as gifts.

Technology

Online Crime Risk: Software creator Symantec, March 2010; based on Symantec's own data about online attacks, malware infections and third-party data about online behavior and Internet availability

Social Networking: Men's Health, March 2011; measured LinkedIn and Facebook users per capita and overall Twitter usage. The study also quantified traffic from MySpace, Friendster, Reddit and Digg.

Environment

Sustainability: SustainLane.com's most recent (2008) city rankings

Local Food and Agriculture: SustainLane.com's most recent (2008) city rankings; For more information, visit sustainlane.com.

Pollution: American Lung Association State of the Air 2011

Education

Smarts: The Daily Beast, Oct. 24, 2010; For more information, visit thedailybeast.com.

High School Graduates: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

College Attainment: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Philanthropy

Total Foundations: The Foundation Center; foundationcenter.org

Volunteering: Volunteering in America, 2009; For more information, visit volunteeringinamerica.gov.

Money Matters: The Foundation Center, foundationcenter.org

Health

Old Habits Die Hard: County Health Rankings; For more information, visit countyhealthrankings.org.

Emergency Care: HealthGrades, April 12, 2011; For more information, visit healthgrades.com.

Obesity: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009 survey

Overweight: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009 survey

Spirited Debate: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 2009 survey

Unhappiness: Bloomberg BusinessWeek, Feb. 26, 2009; For more information, visit businessweek.com.

Health Insurance: U.S. Census 2009 American Community Survey

Recreation

Park Place: The Trust for Public Land's 2010 City Park Facts


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