Diversity is at the forefront of the U.S. conversation, and it's an important topic for the candidates currently running for mayor of fast-growing Fort Worth. (Reminder to vote on Saturday, May 1.)
In the wake of census data showing Texas' population surged with 4 million new residents the past decade, a study sheds some good news on diversity around the state. Finance website WalletHub released its report on 2021’s Most Diverse Cities in America, and it says Texas is home to some of the most diverse cities in the country. Two of them are in Tarrant County.
Houston claimed the title as the most diverse city in America, and Dallas ranked fourth overall.
One Tarrant County city, Arlington, is close behind at No. 8 (one spot higher than last year). And Fort Worth rounds out the top 25 at No. 25 — the same ranking it held last year.
Joining them within the top 100 are Austin, ranked 38th, Plano ranked 55th, San Antonio, 66th, and Corpus Christi, 79th.
"America is undergoing an extreme makeover, thanks to rapid demographic diversification," the study's authors say. "For example, while non-Hispanic whites are expected to remain the largest ethnic group for the foreseeable future, they will likely no longer make up a majority of the population by 2045."
To come up with its rankings, WalletHub compared the profiles of more than 500 of the largest cities across five major diversity categories: socioeconomic, cultural, economic, household, and religious. The annual report drills down into metrics and creates a point system on items such as industry diversity, income, age, religious affiliation, education, language, worker class, and marital status.
Top-ranked Houston’s rankings broke down like this (with 1 equaling most diverse and 250 equaling “average”):
- 49th – educational-attainment diversity
- 40th – racial and ethnic diversity
- 26th – linguistic diversity
- 246th – birthplace diversity
- 15th – industry diversity
- 173rd – occupational diversity
- 228th – marital-status diversity
The city narrowly edged out Jersey City, New Jersey with an overall diversity score of 71.87; Jersey City scored a 71.7. The next major city behind Houston is New York City at No. 3 (71.59).
By comparison, No. 4-Dallas earned a score of 71.52. Dallas scored best in religious diversity (43rd overall) and cultural diversity (43rd overall), followed by socioeconomic diversity (68th), household diversity (159), and economic diversity (190).
Arlington follows at No. 8 overall and a score of 71.19. The city scored best in cultural diversity (38) and religious diversity (90), followed by socioeconomic diversity (111), economic diversity (117), and household diversity (237).
Fort Worth comes in at No. 25 and a score of 70.12. It scored best in cultural diversity (60), followed by socioeconomic diversity (95), economic diversity (119), religious diversity (161), and household diversity (245).
"It’s important to embrace diversity – and it’s good for the economy, too. Not only have waves of immigration changed the face of the nation, they’ve also brought in fresh perspectives, skills and technologies to help the U.S. develop a strong adaptability to change," the study says. "Economies generally fare better when they openly embrace and capitalize on new ideas. Conversely, those relying on old ways and specialized industries tend to be hurt more by changes in the market."