Thursday, July 14, 2011

An Urban Word Cloud

This may be the most fun that I’ve had in a while, at least involving urban studies. I am indebted to Jonathan Feinberg of Wordle Logoand Young Wu of Elsevier who did the search on papers published in 2010 in the Humanities and Social Sciences that contained key words ‘urban’, ‘cities’ or ‘city’.  This yielded over 17000 keywords, which were dumped into Wordle. Unsurprisingly, "urban" anchors the heap, but it is interesting to see what else emerges...."health" is a significant presence (with "health" "care"), along with "policy", "planning" and "development". Neither "global" nor "creative" makes its presence felt. "United States" is the most prominent regional descriptor, but "China" is emerging, as we would expect. There seems to be no mention of climate change or immigration, and transport is not as prominent as one might expect. And its still too soon to see 'foreclosure' in print...perhaps in 2012.

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