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Culture Report Ranks World Cities

Wednesday, August 01, 2012

New York is the number one city for culture — but only in seven out of 60 categories,according to a new report. The mayor of London on Wednesday announced the results of a study that compares 12 world cities worldwide based on the amount of cultural offerings they have. 

The World Cities Culture report ranked the cities on categories like the number of film festivals, book stores, performance spaces and parks were available to visitors and citizens.

New York was the leader in seven categories, including the number of theaters and theater performances, number of dance performances per year, number of comedy clubs, and tied with Paris and Tokyo for the number of concert halls. 

The bad news? New York was only fifth out of the twelve on its percentage of green areas.

Kate Levin, commissioner of the city's Department of Culture, said the reports shouldn't be about whether New York is better than other cities. While it's nice to rack up big numbers, she's looking at other things. "What's the substance behind those numbers? We didn't have the same number of night clubs as Sao Paulo, is that good, is that bad?" she said.

She added, it's also not about how much New York City has relative to other cities, but "there's an international context here that's more fascinating that suggests economic shifts and drivers of audience appetite could be really significant."

Julia Furlan contributed reporting

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