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How open are you to experiences?

This morning Richard Florida published an interesting CityLab article that talks about how different personality types cluster within cities. The study he references was done by a team of psychologists that surveyed 56,000 people in the London metro area.

Here is a summary of what they found (darker red indicates higher concentration of each personality trait):


Probably the most interesting personality trait is the “openness to experience” one, as there appears to be a clear divide between people who live in the center of London and people who live in the suburbs.

Here’s how Florida describes it:

The most clustered personality trait the researchers found was “openness to experience” (bottom left map), which is concentrated in the center of London. Openness to experience, according to a wide body of psychological studies, is associated with creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship. This type is concentrated in higher density neighborhoods, with higher housing prices, more ethnic and religious diversity and higher crime ratesMeanwhile, the blue concentrations at the periphery indicate that there are fewer people open to experience in metro London’s suburbs.

It’s fascinating to think about the role of psychology in city building. It’s not something we often talk about, but it’s there.

I live downtown and I would definitely classify myself as extraverted and open to experiences. How would you classify yourself?

Maps via CityLab

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