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Noah Berger / Reuters

The 2015 Wildfire Season Really Is Worse Than Usual

Drought and climate change have combined to produce the largest area burned in more than a decade.

REUTERS/Luke MacGregor

London's School System Is Shockingly Good

The city’s education success proves that an ethnically diverse, low-income student population is not a justification for low standards.

RTI International

Where America's Obese Live

When it comes to this condition, place matters.

Candy Chan

A Nerd’s-Eye View of New York’s Most Complex Subway Stations

An architect created intricate blueprints of the underground.


The Arctic Sea Ice Remains Troublingly Small

Despite average winds and temperatures, this year’s ice was the fourth-lowest on record.

NASA/Scott Kelly

An Endurance Astronaut's Gorgeous Views of Earth

Celebrate the halfway point of Scott Kelly’s 342-day journey in orbit with these knockout images.

AP/Mel Evans

Saggy Pants and 'Respectability Politics' in Dadeville, Alabama

Policing the appearance of marginalized communities is an American tradition. Making it actual law can have life-destroying consequences.

Rob Felt/Courtesy of University of Illinois

How Origami Is Informing Structural Engineering

An emerging design technique is based on a centuries-old Japanese art form.

The Brookings Institution

The Sharp Rise of the Upper-Middle Class

Income inequality isn’t just about the 1 percent—wealth is increasing for the next 19 percent, too.


6 City Instagram Accounts to Follow

These feeds offer a cleverly curated peek into cities around the world.

REUTERS/Edmund Fountain

New Orleans Finally Starts Addressing Its Housing Affordability Crisis

But first, the city needed to be reminded about how it got into such a mess.

Urb-i / Google Street View

A Before-and-After Photo Archive of the World's Best Street Designs

It’s a walkable feast.

Tim J Keegan / Flickr

A Case Study in Reviving a Dying Downtown

Marcus Westbury’s new book, Creating Cities, describes the small-scale fixes that helped Newcastle, Australia.

Mike Blake / Reuters

Where Not to Be Old and Jobless

Hidden by the steady, optimistic jobs reports in recent months is the fact that unemployment rates for Americans 55 and older have been increasing.

Mass Incarceration, Visualized

Sociologist Bruce Western explains why the rate of incarceration is so high for young black men in the U.S.

Sean Pavone /

China's Best-Performing Cities

Despite the nation’s recent financial setbacks, these metros will contribute to future global prosperity.

California High-Speed Rail Authority

There's an Awful Lot of Parking Near This California High-Speed Rail Station

If a goal of the train is to reduce car-reliance, why does a new rendering show a big surface lot?

MIT AgeLab

Prototyping the Age-Ready City

At MIT’s AgeLab, researchers work on autonomous wheelchairs, neighborhood design for the cognitively impaired, and a host of other strategies to prepare for the “silver tsunami.”


This Glowing Water Bottle Doubles As a Bike Light

The $30 Candea bottle glimmers as if filled with nuclear waste.