April 28, 2020 By:

Triumph of the City: How Our Greatest Invention Makes Us Richer, Smarter, Greener, Healthier and Happier. By Edward n; Yet cities get a bad rap: they’re dirty, poor, unhealthy, crime ridden, expensive, environmentally unfriendly Or are they? As Edward Glaeser proves in this. Triumph of the City. Edward Glaeser. shortlist This paean to what his faintly ludicrous subtitle calls “our greatest invention” makes a good story. It won’t be.

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I’m still a subscriber to Malthus, in the end, and while I think he did a fantastic job of arguing that large cities are the best way to make the world richer and happier, and making those cities dense is the best way to have a massive population without too much pollution.

Triumph of the City

He attacks many other policies that he believes lead to bad environmental outcomes: This finding resonates well with many other experiments, which have shown that face-to-face contact leads to more trust, generosity, and cooperation than any other sort of interaction.

At the turn of the 20th century, thanks to the invention of the Otis safety elevatorit seemed that the skyscraper would usher in a century of dense, urban living. Governments conflate the two but they are very different things.

I do have some bones to pick, this author comes across as a free-market economist, which given who he works for is not surprising. The themes of the book are interesting, cities are the greenest living spaces and are intellectually productive. He loves high rises, but on the Vancouver model–slender high rises set apart so every one in them has views and there’s plenty of space in between.

More than half of America’s income is earned in twenty-two metropolitan areas. Urban residents are, on average, cigy healthier than suburban residents they spend more time walking and much less time stuck in traffic.


Triumph of the City | Manhattan Institute

Oct 14, David Sasaki rated it really liked it. Dec 07, Andrew rated it it was amazing Shelves: As industrialization decline, Manchester for example lost its main activity hence human capital comes in order for the city to stay relevant. City life has many challenges like crime, poverty and disease but the author brilliantly illustrates that these challenges can be overcome with the right public policies and political will.

As anyone who triujph been to a grocery store knows, checkout clerks differ wildly in their speed and competence.

I’d give this one two thumbs down and a strong avoid recommendation. There is lots more in this wonderful book, which overall makes me much ciy optimistic about the ability of our increasingly urbanized world to change and adapt.

Triumph of the City Quotes

Or the ridiculously low gasoline tax, which encourages more people to drive in cars rather than take public transportation. Building tne road itself is a paradox solution- it’s like we’re promoting car commutes instead of public transport. But for those of us who do, we shouldn’t be punished by policies that favor the suburbs.

It did not have the same impact on me as Jacobs’ book had but it was a very good book. Reading this book is like being at a party with your smartest friend, when they are terribly ecward by personal problems and the rush of daily life.

But cities can be made even better, he says.

Triumph of the City by Edward Glaeser

Public transportation is so good that New Yorkers use less fuel per capita than any other city in the country, by a wide margin. America is an urban nation. First, I don’t think this a true statement – I have seen lots of development on 5th ave and CPW and second, how about a shout out to Marshall Field, the man who fought to save the lakefront of Chicago from development?


Stewart Brand and others have written good stuff on the first and many have written on the later.

Benefits of My MI With a free MI account, you can follow specific scholars or subjects, search MI’s research archives and past articles, and receive customized news and updates from the Institute. It turns out that the productivity of average clerks rises substantially when there is a star clerk working on their shift, and those same average clerks get worse when their shift is filled with below-average clerks. Download our Spring Fiction Sampler Now.

Glaeser heavily criticizes, not people suburbanising but policies that nudge sub-urbanization, corroborating his censure with evidence of how environmentally unfriendly it is when you move to a once rural place, live there as you would in city and drive to work everyday. A great book for city planners and anyone who is interested in cities.

Traditionally the city has been a place to make ideas, not automobiles, and places designed to attract the educated and the skilled, not the unskilled factory worker.

In the post war years New York increasingly restricted development and tried to make up for the lack of private supply with rent control and public housing. So they leave and head for the big city.