Boston’s brains among the elite

If anyone needed further evidence that Boston tops the hierarchy of elite East Coast metropolises, the Daily Beast ranked the Hub the brainiest city in the nation.

If anyone needed further evidence that Boston tops the hierarchy of elite East Coast metropolises, the Daily Beast ranked the Hub the No. 1 brainiest city in the nation.

The online news magazine ranked Bostonians above six other East Coast cities, including New York and Philadelphia.

The site noted that Greater Boston is home to more than 100 universities and ranks near the top in graduate degrees per capita.

One indicator used to rank America’s 55 largest cities from first to worst was nonfiction book sales, a category Greater Boston ranks in the top 10 percent nationally. The Daily Beast said nonfiction books are a better indicator of brains than fiction because they are more “thought-provoking.”

But Fiery Cushman, a postdoctoral fellow in psychology at Harvard University, told the Daily Beast that Bostonians haven’t necessarily read all those books.

“When you go into somebody’s office or you go into their home, one of the things you case out is their bookshelf,” he said. “Bostonians have unrealistic expectations about how much reading they can get done.”

 
 
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