Mapping Power Brokers at

When most of us think "social networking" the first thing that comes to mind are personal sites like Facebook or LinkedIn. Recognizing the power of personal connection, is a news site that works in a fantastic interactive social network map connecting muckety-mucks in each news story.

Now that Obama has won the Democratic nomination, Muckety is focusing on Chicago, starting with a piece detailing the city's 100 most networked people. Carol Eisenberg writes:

George W. Bush saw the world through the prism of the Texas oilmen whose livelihood and passions he shared.

When he became president, he chose Houston oil executives and Austin honchos for top posts in his administration - with huge implications for national policy. If Illinois Sen. Barack Obama is elected, he would in all likelihood draw heavily from his home base in Chicago - to very different effect.

Keep an eye on Muckety's ongoing Chicago coverage.

Welcome to

Welcome to, a site devoted to analyzing and discussing the places where we live and work. Practitioners at heart, we want to know not only what is happening, but why it is so and how we can inform better decisions.

New Geography opens with a discussion of Chicago, including a piece by prolific blogger and long-time Chicago observer Steve Bartin.

Urban scholar Fred Siegel writes:

In his eye opening piece on Chicago's troubles, Steve Bartin rightly points to Chicago’s head tax on employment as a job killer. The closest analog is another long declining city Philadelphia which is burdened by a wage tax that has pushed numerous businesses just across the city line. But while taxes are still rising in Chicago, Philly’s new reform Mayor Michael Nutter has moved to gradually reduce the wage tax.
The one serious omission in the piece is the impact of crime. Chicago, which has 54 shooting over two weekends in April and has begun talking about arming its police with assault weapons to combat it’s gangs, has a homicide rate 3 times higher than New York and nearly 70 percent higher than L.A.

We welcome your writing, your thoughts on the site, and you ideas for emerging themes in economic development, city demographics, and community leadership.