Localism Index: how does your area stack up?
Chris Holcomb, a community advocate who has worked extensively with BALLE, has just put together a very interesting “Localism Index” of the hundred most populous metropolitan areas in the U.S. He summarizes his methodology:
Based on the results of this academic research, I compiled 5 different indicators as proxies corresponding to each area of focus. I applied this index to the 100 most populous Metropolitan Statistical Areas (MSAs) in the United States.
For Local Ownership, I used the Indie City Index from Civic Economics.
For Local Place, I used the average Walkscore of the largest cities in each MSA.
For Local Opportunity, I used the inverse of the Gini Coefficient of Inequality for each MSA.
For Local relationship with Nature, I adapted the Locavore Index for local foods to the level of the MSA.
For Local Relationships, I used the Social and Community components of the Gallup-Healthways Community Well-Being Index.
Each of these factors was then converted to a scale of 0 to 100, and averaged together to create the composite score for the Index.