Pittsburgh has a reputation for being a beautiful city. We have an award-winning panoramic skyline. It's one of the best all-American vacation spots. We're leaders in environmental/green construction. Pittsburgh has also consistently shown its might through its strength,
resiliency, and constant reinvention. We've been ranked the most livable city in the continental US and were recently rated the second smartest American City by Forbes. Lately, it seems Pittsburgh can do no wrong.
This epic aerial video showcases Pittsburgh's beauty.
So, the question becomes – what’s happening organically within Pittsburgh? What are the factors at play? Why the buzz?
Pittsburgh shows its might and beauty through being a city of diverse and courageous people who adapt, evolve, and innovate - and this is attracting attention.
In a recent interview, Carnegie Mellon University President Subra Suresh said, “Diversity in the broadest sense —intellectual, cultural, ethnic, racial or national origin — intrinsically enhances artistic and technical innovation. If it is composed of an appropriate mix of people, when a heterogeneous group takes a look at any issue, the members have a much better chance of correcting each other’s hidden biases. That’s why I think multicultural, cosmopolitan areas thrive.”
Recently the Knight Foundation’s “Soul of the Community” study conducted by Gallup explored what community qualities influence residents’ loyalty and passion for where they live. By understanding community attachment, we can ultimately attract and keep talented workers, further connect residents to their community, and help develop economic vitality.
While "aesthetics" ranked as the top indicator of community satisfaction, a welcoming and open community consistently ranked in the top three. We know that Pittsburgh has lush waterways and beautiful topography, but what is the city doing to develop a welcoming and diverse community?
It might surprise you to hear that Pittsburgh has an organization entirely dedicated to this area of fostering diversity. Vibrant Pittsburgh’s mission is to ensure the Pittsburgh region’s growth by attracting, retaining and elevating a diversity of talent, and to promote the region nationally and internationally as a diverse, welcoming, region of opportunities. Vibrant Pittsburgh’s CEO Melanie Harrington said “This is something, I think, that is unique to Pittsburgh – that we are all working together to make this a reality.”
The Center has always served as a leading resource for race-related research which is crucial for community leaders and policymakers interested in gaining a better understanding of racial disparities and finding effective strategies for improving these conditions. It is one of the most well-known and respected centers in the country, and in 2010 it hosted the largest conference on race ever held in America.
Pittsburgh is over 250 years old and our history of innovation is rich and plentiful. We've made electric lighting possible, are the birthplace of both labor unions and professional football in America, and invented the banana split!
“Innovation Works help researchers commercialize ideas that could change the world .”
According to a review by Ernst & Young, Pittsburgh ranks 3rd in the number of venture deals per capita compared to similar regions and those that are more active technology hubs. In a recent press release, Rich Lunak, President & CEO of Innovation Works said, “When we benchmark Pittsburgh against the kinds of communities we look up to, we are making great strides to reach the high levels of entrepreneurial activity we want to foster…This shows that our great companies are able to attract the capital they need to grow and the roster of investors in our local companies is a Who’s Who of top investment firms from across the country.”
In 2008 GTECH received the prestigious Echoing Green Fellowship, an international award that honors the work of entrepreneurs and their vision for community and social change. According to GTECH’s website, this “catalyzed the growth of GTECH into a change-making organization and a community leader on both a regional and national level…This enabled the organization to expand their reach, increase the team, and focus on applying innovation and environmental equity to the community development system.”
“Pittsburgh is, in so many ways, the poster child for regional resilience,” said Kathryn Foster, director of the University of Buffalo (UB) Regional Institute. “From the post-war smoky city when Pittsburgh was an industrial powerhouse, bolstered by the Allegheny Conference and other local stakeholders, the city transformed itself over the subsequent decades into a beautiful, viable place.”
Resilience is associated with flexibility, adaptability, and the courage to begin again. “These concepts inform a very simple definition that we can begin to apply to regions: The key to the concept is the ‘bounce-back,’ that ability to recovery from stresses,” Foster continued.
Pittsburgh is a textbook example of adaptability and has been ranked as one of the most resilient cities in the world due to our ability to accommodate change and handle the challenges of our time.
“We just did what Pittsburghers do: we dusted ourselves off, we worked hard, and we re-identified ourselves”
-Mayor Bill Peduto
Who's Building the Buzz about the 'Burgh? We are.
It goes well beyond our history, our rich cultural neighborhoods, and even our well-earned national accolades. It’s the diversity that makes our community vibrant and strong. It’s the fact that our community actively fosters innovation in everything from tech start-ups to grassroots community-building initiatives. But most of all, it's the courage that we've shown in our ability to adapt, evolve, and reinvent ourselves time and again.
No wonder there's a buzz.