- August 4, 2016

Science Confirms Austinites Are Among The Most Avid Readers In The World

Austin happens to be a pretty magical place, as we all know, and one of the reasons for that is that its residents seek their magic in the pages of books. A new study published by the World Cities Culture Forum reveals that Austin ranks 10th out of their 20 global partner cities for most bookstores per capita, according to a study published in Quartz.

Every year the World Cities Culture Forum collects information on how people consume culture around the world. The organization looks at factors like how many video game arcades a city has, or how much a city forks over for movie tickets each year. Led by London’s mayor’s office and organized by UK consulting company Bop, the forum asks its partner cities to self-report on cultural institutions and consumption, including where people can get books.

Over the past two years, 18 cities have reported how many bookstores they have, and 20 have reported on their public libraries. Austin fared pretty well as number 10, considering the global competition.

In addition to great bookstores, we also have a pretty great library system and some wonderful book festivals including the Texas Book Festival and the Texas Teen Book Festival.

We also have our fair share of great authors, too. The sci-fi genre is well represented in Austin, with notables like Bruce Sterling, a pioneer in the cyberpunk genre. Ready Player One author Ernest Cline is probably our most recent literary success story (one full of Austin influence), as his book is currently being turned into a film directed by Stephen Spielberg.

Of course, plenty of non-fiction has made its way through the hands of Austinites including Lance Armstrong, Molly Ivins, David Bull, Spike Gillespie, and Liz Carpenter.

Basically, we drink and we know things. It’s how we roll.