2018’s Most & Least Diverse States in America

One year ago, according to WalletHub, the top five most diverse states were California, Texas, Hawaii, New Jersey, and New York. The least diverse states were Montana, New Hampshire, Vermont, Maine, and West Virginia.  Have things changed in 2018? Nope!

To determine where the most idea and identity exchanges have occurred at the highest level — and where the population is relatively more homogeneous — WalletHub compared the 50 states across six key diversity categories. The categories include socioeconomic, cultural, economic, household, religious and political diversity.

Interesting to see that 3 of the 5 least diverse states are in the New England area. The top 5, and even top 10 are no surprise either.

When asked, “What are the pros and cons of living in a diverse state,” WalletHub’s panel experts gave great insight:

Marcus M. Stuart, Associate Professor of Management, Bentley University:

Theoretically, the pros include factors such as a more diverse economy and, a wider array of talent and skill sets among the labor force. Such factors would seem to support entrepreneurship and other social and economic innovation. Theoretically, the cons include factors such as difficulty finding common ground with regard to social and economic priorities (policy) due to divergent values. Socio-economic diversity can strain public resources, bring attention to economic disparity, and foster discord among groups.

Donald Tomaskovic-Devey, Professor of Sociology, University of Massachusetts

Diversity is not a static aspect of states, but something that happens at different rates of growth. The people of the world are moving toward economic opportunity and so growing diversity is almost always a sign of increased economic vitality. This happens both because new populations move to places with growing opportunities and they increase the size of the economy by their presence.

It’s very interesting to see what WalletHub considers diversity since my immediate thought is cultural diversity. However, I’ve come to realize that WalletHub’s definition of diversity is more broad.

Do you agree with the findings in your state?

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