About Wendell Cox, Principal, Demographia

Wendell Cox is principal of Demographia (St. Louis, MO-IL). He is a Senior Fellow at the Urban Reform Institute (Houston) and the Frontier Centre for Public Policy (Winnipeg) and on the Board of Advisors at the Center for Demographics and Policy at Chapman University. He was a visiting professor at the Conservatoire National des Arts et Metiers (Paris). He was appointed to the Los Angeles County Transportation Commission by Mayor Tom Bradley and to the Amtrak Reform Council by Speaker Newt Gingrich. He earned a BA in Government from California State University, Los Angeles and an MBA from Pepperdine University.

Cut Expensive Housing Regulations to Preserve the Middle Class

Noting that house prices have been growing three times faster than incomes in the last two decades, OECD found that “housing has been the main driver of rising middle-class expenditure.” Moreover, OECD noted that the largest housing cost increases are in home ownership, not rents. 

Housing largely determines the cost of living. For example, in the United States, more than 85% of the higher cost of living in the most expensive US metropolitan areas is in housing. Fundamentally, housing affordability is not about house prices; it is about house prices in relation to household incomes. Housing affordability cannot be assessed without metrics that include both prices and incomes.

A Comparison of the World’s 1,000 Largest Urban Areas

In recent years, the world’s urban population has exceeded the rural population for the first time. Yet to read some reports, one could get the impression that the typical urban resident lives in one of the largest cities, like Manila, Shanghai, London, or Seoul. In fact, the megacities have only 8.4 percent of the world’s population. Nearly twice that number live in urban areas with fewer than 100,000 residents (Figure 2). In the US, any settlement with a population of 2,500 is considered an urban area.

blank

The Future of Cities

Mayors, planners, futurists, technologists, executives and advocates — hundreds of urban thought leaders publish on Meeting of the Minds. Sign up below to follow the future of cities.

You have Successfully Subscribed!