The surveys are organized by "an international group of city leaders that includes [Baltimore Mayor Martin] O'Malley, the goal is to provide a statistical tableau for urban areas throughout the world to determine their political, economic and social well-being through what is essentially a resident-satisfaction survey."
"...... The survey ... provides the first way ever to collect systematic and comparable data on a large sample of city-regions around the world and over time."
"One of the poll's designers was Richard Florida, an economist and author of The Rise of the Creative Class. The main thrust of Florida's work, which O'Malley summarized in his 2004 State of the City address, 'is that our country's economy is now fueled by the growing creative class, a diverse and expanding class of Americans whose economic and social lives are organized not by employer but by place, by cities.' "
Thanks to Chris Steins