Richard Florida reports that Lafayette, Indiana, ranks as one of America’s top brainiest cities. It’s true, we’re wicked smart.
This study used gaming software called Lumosity (think the computer games that you use to procrastinate when you should be compiling your TPS reports) to measure not only how we perform on tests, but how we improve over time, effectively measuring cognitive performance.
To measure the smartest cities, Lumosity scientists tracked the cognitive performance of more than one million users in the United States on their games, mapping them across U.S. metros using IP geolocation software. Individual scores were recorded in five key cognitive areas: memory, processing speed, flexibility, attention, and problem solving.The data was normalized into a basic brain performance index controlling for age and gender. Only metros with more than 500 observations were included. The data cover 169 metros.
…The Lumosity data were significantly associated with both the share of adults with a bachelor’s degree or greater (.56) and the percent engaged in knowledge and creative work (.45). Higher cognitive performance scores not surprisingly were also associated with higher rates of innovation, greater concentrations of high-tech industry and higher per capita incomes.
Click through to see the how scores were mapped across the United States.
It’s fun, but this shouldn’t be a surprise to us either. Several years ago, West Lafayette was named the 6th smartest small town in America by Forbes magazine, and US World News & Report named us one of the top ten smartest places to retire.