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Monday, November 14, 2011

What is a Liveable City?

We all want to feel safe in our houses, safe in our streets and safe in our towns or suburbs. That sort of safety and tranquillity is all a part of the scale of Liveability of an area or place. Every year, surveys are completed as part of the Economist Intelligence Unit’s: Global Liveability Survey, and these explain where in the world may be the nicest and more adequate place to live in based on several factors. These factors include: stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education and also infrastructure. These categories are compiled together to gather a score out of a 100 to see how liveable a place may be to live or habituate within.

The stability has several indicators like the other categories, and these include: crime, violent crime, terror, military conflict and civil unrest.  Now at first glance, stability doesn’t seem to relate at all to crime rates and violence. In society, stability can also be related to economic and financial causes and if someone is able to live a stable life where employment is available and the space to grow a family. However for this survey it is dependent on crime rates, and the severity of violence. Does this mean the aspects of economic stability and similar aspects are forgotten? Well the survey is all about hardship and the lack of, and is based around the ability to live safely (if possible) in an area, and so forgets aspects that will lead on from living in a decent place, such as employment and opportunities. It’s about if a place provides certain things such as a low crime rate in this case.
Does the particular place have conflicts that will harm living stage? That is what stability is based around in this context.

This is obviously about the ability to get medical attention, and takes into account the two different sides of medical care: public and private. Are both available, and what is the quality of these areas. Interestingly, the availability of over-the-counter drugs is also regulated and surveyed as well. This can explain a lot about a place, if they have the ability and money to fund and sell medicines and drugs that are expensive but effective. It adds up to how available medical assistance is of a place. Healthcare is a prime concern to many places in the world, especially third world countries which lack the money to afford adequate health care to cure disease and illnesses.

This is a smaller section that is surveyed, and explains about the availability of private education and also public. However the survey does not look at the quality of public education which is different, and questionable. Is it saying that the quality of public education is unimportant, or doesn’t add to a places liveability? Surely if the local education that was public was at a high level it would produce a much smarter population in the long run, as not many children are able to study at private institutions due to financial reasons. Interesting stuff!

Culture and Environment
This is always an important section, and covers the most in all of the survey. Its all about how available certain aspects of a community are, and these can include sporting events and cultural activities, food and drinks and ability to buy and consume goods and services. The area that is the most strange is how humidity and temperature/climate is also measured in comparison to discomfort of travellers. This pretty much says that any country who has high humidity levels will score a very low result in this area. Maybe a more clear and better way of measurement can be seen through how a place responds to these conditions to make the place liveable. That would be a much more accurate response that really shows how a place is liveable is how they respond to natural environments that may cause discomfort.

Basically just the quality of transport and provisions of services such as water and energy. This is clearly all money based, and the place who is able to place enough money into the area for transport and planning will succeed in this area easily.

Overall, the survey hits a lot of important areas of how liveable a city is, but lacks in how responses to discomfort is not measured. A place may not have the best transport facilities, but its their response as a result to their issues of lack of money or resources. I think a more in depth look into how a city continues with the 

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