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Old December 21st, 2012, 12:36 PM   #1
Jaeger
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World Cities Cultural Report Skewed Data

Earlier this year the World Cities Cultural Report compared London with a number of world cities such as New York and Paris.

I was initially quite interested in the comparison until I saw the data they used.

http://www.worldcitiesculturereport....wse-indicators

For instance they use the 'The Society of London Theatres' which only represents 'West End Theatres' (less than half the theatres in London) to base their total theatre figures on, meaning all the theatre figures for London look poor by comparison. Does London really have half the theatre audiences of NYC????

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_London_venues

National Museums in UK - the report clams there are 11 in London, whilst it com pletley ignores major intitutions such as reference libraries. London being home to a number of major reference libraries such as the British Library with it's 14 million books and London Library, on top of the 17 million books in London's public libraty service. Whilst in terms of orchestras London has 5 world class symphony orchestras which is far more than most of our rivals, we also have more music venues and two superb opera and ballet houses. Yet the figures don't seem to reflect this???

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nationa...United_Kingdom

In terms of bars they use the New York State Licensing Authority using numbers that reflect the state of New York and NYC Metro Area compared to London where they only use those within the city boundary. Does New York City really have 7,224, whilst London only has 2,143 - I thought we Brits drank a lot. Surely this is the NY State figure rather than the city figure or are the 8 million inhabitants of NYC all alchololics. Then again on most reliable brewery and UK Alcohol industry sites the number of London pubs is put at around 7,000 and not 2,143???? - try googling 7,000 pubs in London

http://thelondonpubcrawlco.com/

http://newmanarms.co.uk/press/no-1-5...%80%93-timeout

I am also fairly sure London doesn't have 37,000 restaurants and that the figure is nearer to 10,000 -

http://www.aboutmygeneration.com/?p=10380

There are numerous other such inaccuracies in the data - and the report is far from refective of the true picture. I would welcome any fellow SSC forumers pointing out further inaccuracies in this report, as it's clearly a report which has taken figures from all over the place including state and metro area (in terms of cities such as New York) and is far from a level playing field.






Last edited by Jaeger; December 22nd, 2012 at 07:21 PM.
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Old December 21st, 2012, 06:14 PM   #2
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Regarding libraries, the British Library is NOT the main UK library, that accolade belongs to Birmingham which has one of the largest on earth, but your point does still stand.
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Old December 21st, 2012, 10:03 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ill tonkso View Post
Regarding libraries, the British Library is NOT the main UK library, that accolade belongs to Birmingham which has one of the largest on earth, but your point does still stand.
The British Library is a national research library and not a lending library, and yes in terms of public lending libraries Birmingham's new Central Library is one of the biggest and most impressive.

As for the World City Cultural Report it seems based on some very strange figures and does not seem to represent a level playing field.

I think BOP's research has been very poor indeed








Last edited by Jaeger; December 22nd, 2012 at 01:33 PM.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 02:42 PM   #4
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London has 16000 bars I think
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 02:58 PM   #5
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During the 1990s it was 8000 pubs and bars, now would be much more so.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 07:04 PM   #6
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I wouldn't really pay much attention to badly compiled analyses of what a city is about. Even if accurately compiled, statistics can't tell you much about what a city can offer you.

One of the charms of (to pick a city I like at random) San Francisco is that some of the things I love about the city are simply impossible to turn into statistics.

I was sitting in a cafe in the picturesque suburb of 'Cole Valley' (near Twin Peaks) watching the trams go past in the autumn sun enjoying a pint (ish) of Sam Adams with my partner.

How can that be captured by statistics? London outdoes (for me at least) San Francisco in so many ways, but I don't really care. I like both places and I'll never call upon some dry analysis to tell me where to live. Vancouver will never attract me despite its high rankings on the 'quality of life' scale.
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Old December 22nd, 2012, 07:24 PM   #7
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I agree with all yout comments, and I know such statistical comparisons are often meaningless. Although surely the whole point of statistical analysis is to deliver a degree of accuracy and it's fairly clear from some of the figures in this report that it is way off the mark in terms of accuracy.
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Old December 23rd, 2012, 10:05 PM   #8
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This always happens, look at what data is used to compared GDP figures between cities for example.

It's not even about using similar data sets as sometimes what appears to be accurate is not. Even the city boundary of NY is an inaccurate comparison to London given it hasn't been expanded to reflect its urban spread in over 100 years. The boundary of (greater) London resembles its urban area far more than NYC, never mind Paris. By the same token we have no metro region like Ile-de-France to make a comparison, nor does this country even produce true metro areas as such along US lines - the most widely quoted figure seems to be Eurostats' LUZ, which itself appears to my eyes to use different methodologies to what authorities in North America do (ONS do produce an urban area for London if I remember though).
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Old December 24th, 2012, 11:11 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kerouac1848 View Post
This always happens, look at what data is used to compared GDP figures between cities for example.

It's not even about using similar data sets as sometimes what appears to be accurate is not. Even the city boundary of NY is an inaccurate comparison to London given it hasn't been expanded to reflect its urban spread in over 100 years. The boundary of (greater) London resembles its urban area far more than NYC, never mind Paris. By the same token we have no metro region like Ile-de-France to make a comparison, nor does this country even produce true metro areas as such along US lines - the most widely quoted figure seems to be Eurostats' LUZ, which itself appears to my eyes to use different methodologies to what authorities in North America do (ONS do produce an urban area for London if I remember though).
I agree - it's a waste of time comparing vast US metro areas to other countries cities around the world, and given that city boundaries haven't changed to reflect modern growth it's little wonder that such comparisons are laughable.

Then again this report is laughable full stop, everyone knows there are at least 7,000 pubs in London, it looks like they came up with the 2,143 bars using yellow pages, which I persume was just for one small part of London. There is also the possibility that they counted pubs that served hot food as restaurants ir food outlets hence the enormously inflated figure of 37,000 retaurants compared to NYC's 24,000.

As for the theatres they admit themselves that the figure for London only includes the West End Theatres (SOLT Group) and neglects to include the vast majority of London theatres meaning the income and audience figures are also inaccurate. In fact the whole report is so riddled with inaccuracies that it is pointless and offers no real insight or accurate reference.




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Old December 24th, 2012, 06:30 PM   #10
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Just noticed they put London's population at 7.8 million. Wow, just wow, the report was written this year, the census from last year showed 8.2 million. Someone should write in, really dont know how such a prominent organisation cant even get the basic facts, a simple google search could put right, let alone a team of paid writers, archivists and 'experts'.

Lazy fact finding, half arsed masquerading as cutting edge.
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Old December 27th, 2012, 01:45 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jaeger View Post
Earlier this year the World Cities Cultural Report compared London with a number of world cities such as New York and Paris.

I was initially quite interested in the comparison until I saw the data they used.

http://www.worldcitiesculturereport....wse-indicators

For instance they use the 'The Society of London Theatres' which only represents 'West End Theatres' (less than half the theatres in London) to base their total theatre figures on, meaning all the theatre figures for London look poor by comparison. Does London really have half the theatre audiences of NYC????

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_London_venues

National Museums in UK - the report clams there are 11 in London, whilst it com pletley ignores major intitutions such as reference libraries. London being home to a number of major reference libraries such as the British Library with it's 14 million books and London Library, on top of the 17 million books in London's public libraty service. Whilst in terms of orchestras London has 5 world class symphony orchestras which is far more than most of our rivals, we also have more music venues and two superb opera and ballet houses. Yet the figures don't seem to reflect this???

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Nationa...United_Kingdom

In terms of bars they use the New York State Licensing Authority using numbers that reflect the state of New York and NYC Metro Area compared to London where they only use those within the city boundary. Does New York City really have 7,224, whilst London only has 2,143 - I thought we Brits drank a lot. Surely this is the NY State figure rather than the city figure or are the 8 million inhabitants of NYC all alchololics. Then again on most reliable brewery and UK Alcohol industry sites the number of London pubs is put at around 7,000 and not 2,143???? - try googling 7,000 pubs in London

http://thelondonpubcrawlco.com/

http://newmanarms.co.uk/press/no-1-5...%80%93-timeout

I am also fairly sure London doesn't have 37,000 restaurants and that the figure is nearer to 10,000 -

http://www.aboutmygeneration.com/?p=10380

There are numerous other such inaccuracies in the data - and the report is far from refective of the true picture. I would welcome any fellow SSC forumers pointing out further inaccuracies in this report, as it's clearly a report which has taken figures from all over the place including state and metro area (in terms of cities such as New York) and is far from a level playing field.





The 8.3m in NY is just the five boroughs of NYC, an area which is smaller and denser than Greater London, which was used for the 7m population figure. There are millions more in very urban areas in NJ, which were excluded.

Nevertheless, London clearly is one of the top 3 greatest cities in the world by practically everyone's measure, if not, the greatest. Who cares what these wankers conclude.

Last edited by RobertWalpole; December 27th, 2012 at 03:40 AM.
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Old December 27th, 2012, 05:03 PM   #12
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This survey was commissioned by the Mayor of London, wasn't it?
It's not supposed to be anything too serious -- just a way of sharing ideas and comparing best practices across the so-called 'global cities'.
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Old January 4th, 2013, 02:57 AM   #13
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Who cares, London is the best city in the world anyway haha if you ever need reminding that just watch the nye fireworks!! nyc with it's pathetic ball drop every year lol
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