Boulder Named “Most Educated City”

December 20th, 2014

City Continues to Lead in Important Element of Creative Innovation

The Website 247WallSt.com has named Boulder the “Most Educated City” in the nation. As the Infographic below shows, with over 58 percent of the adult population (over 25) having at least a bachelor’s degree, Boulder outdistances other top areas. Why is this significant?

MostEducatedInfographic

High Educational Attainment a Driver of Creative Innovation

As the 247 WallSt.com article pointed out, having a highly educated workforce can benefit a community in a number of ways. For one, high education attainment cities often are those in which universities are located. Such places can be successful in convincing young graduates to stay and help contribute. They also may attract other highly educated potential residents. Second, although a specific degree of education is not necessarily a guarantee of higher earnings, cities with the highest college attainment also may have higher median household incomes. Boulder is no exception to that, with a reported household income from 247WallSt.com of $71,604 or ninth highest in their list. (NOTE: Educational attainment rates, median earnings by level of education, household median income, population estimates, and poverty data reportedly came from the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2013 American Community Survey.)

We’ve also pointed to Boulder’s highly educated workforce as a reason the City is considered to be a leader in innovation and entrepreneurship. And, we’ve noted that renowned urbanism expert Richard Florida has cited educational attainment as an important attribute of the “creative class” that supports dynamic, innovative communities. That’s because “These people engage in complex problem solving that involves a great deal of independent judgment and requires high levels of education or human capital.”[i]

Of course, dynamic communities need a variety of skills and creative people. Diverse groups can all contribute ideas and energy. But education can be a route for upward economic mobility and can help drive economic vitality for all.

The bottom line, we’re proud of all our citizens and their contributions, but we’re happy to be atop this very important list.

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[i] Florida, Richard (2012-06-26). The Rise of the Creative Class–Revisited: 10th Anniversary Edition–Revised and Expanded (Kindle Locations 460-461). Basic Books. Kindle Edition

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