New York City is the quintessential melting pot

Charts & Graphs, Lab Reports, Maps
Photo of Time Square


New York City is considered the biggest melting pot city in the world. With over 800 languages spoken in the city, this city is considered home to many. As someone who started to call New York home not until recently, it has always been fascinating to see how diverse the population is in the city. I believe this experience is shared by many. Learning about a new country from strangers who turned into friends simply by living here is an experience one can rarely find anywhere else. People from every continent and corner of the world are here in New York City. This report investigates the number of foreign-born people who live in the city and which borough is most populated by foreign-born residents. Below are the questions to answer through this report.

  1. Which borough is the most popular for foreign-born residents?
  2. Where do most foreign-born residents come from? 


Social Explorer, Microsoft Excel, and Datawrapper. 


To build the visualization, first, data are collected through Social Explorer. The data on Social Explorer is based on the American Community Survey 2020 with a 5-year estimate. The data exported from social explorer is imported into Excel to edit and clean. It’s essential to relabel and group the data in Excel before exporting and importing it to Datawrapper. Using Datawrapper, an interactive area chart is created with the borough on the X-axis and the number of the population on the Y-axis. An interactive bar chart is also built with the region on the X-axis and the number of the population on the Y-axis. Columns on the bar chart can be switched with other boroughs by clicking on the tab above the bar chart. I chose the area chart for the visualization because it helps show categories’ proportions. The interactive feature to change the column by borough in the bar chart makes it easier to switch around when looking at multiple categories in detail.


Link to Social Explorer Map:

I find it intriguing that there are more census areas with higher foreign-born residents in Queens and Brooklyn compared to other boroughs.

Following the map chart, looking at the area chart, Queens deserves its title, “The world’s borough,” by taking first place as the most popular borough for the foreign-born population, followed closely by Brooklyn, with around 144 thousand fewer people. The least popular borough is Staten Island, with only 114 thousand foreign-born people residing in that borough. 

People born in the Americas and Asia are the first and second highest foreign-born populations in New York City. On the other hand, the smallest population is people coming from Oceania.

When looking at each borough, Latin America takes first place with the highest foreign-born population in every borough, except for Staten Island. In Staten Island, the highest foreign-born population is from Eastern Europe. Another interesting number is that while people from the Oceania and North America area are the smallest foreign-born population, most of them live in the Manhattan area. 


While these charts show us where people live and come from, they don’t explain why. As an immigrant myself, several factors make me live here in Queens. These factors are affordability, time to travel to Manhattan (because this is where I go to school and work), and the community itself. In the future, I would like to continue investigating the reason why the majority of certain foreign-born populations live in a specific borough compared to other boroughs. For example, study more on why people who come from Eastern European countries live in Staten Island instead of other boroughs.