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Published August 09, 2012, 11:30 PM

Survey: Minnesota, North Dakota will be among best places to live in 2032

FARGO - Twenty years from now, cars will fly, your iPhone will double as your au pair, and the “Spiderman” trilogy with be on its 12th reboot. And Minnesota and North Dakota will be among the top five states to live in, according to a new study by poll giant Gallup, which studied 13 “forward-looking” metrics to determine the best future states to live in.

FARGO - Twenty years from now, cars will fly, your iPhone will double as your au pair, and the “Spiderman” trilogy with be on its 12th reboot.

And Minnesota and North Dakota will be among the top five states to live in, according to a new study by poll giant Gallup, which studied 13 “forward-looking” metrics to determine the best future states to live in.

Minnesota ranked No. 2 in the study, behind Utah. North Dakota came in at No. 5, behind No. 3 Colorado and No. 4 Nebraska.

The five future worst states to live in were West Virginia, Mississippi, Kentucky, Nevada and Arkansas, according to the survey.

Gallup didn’t specifically name 2032 as the magic year when the projections would come true. That part came from “U.S. News and World Report,” best known for its annual college rankings.

Minnesota topped the field in economic confidence and, in keeping with its reputation as an outdoors haven, access to safe places to exercise. It also earned high marks in clean water, learning opportunities, and dental visits.

What do dental visits have to do with anything? They’re a health indicator linked to a number of other health conditions.

North Dakota, meanwhile, earned top marks in job creation and full-time employment – no surprise for a state that’s had the lowest unemployment rate in the nation for three years.

The state also boasts the second-highest standard of living in the study, second only to our familiar nemesis in the “best place to live” arms race: Hawaii, which finished a distant 8th in this study.

Minnesotans and North Dakotans are upbeat about the futures of their respective states. Minnesotan ranked No. 6 in optimism for their city or area, and North Dakotans finished No. 14 in that category.

Ask them about their own personal outlook, though, and they’re considerably more cautious. North Dakotans were just No. 37 in the nation in optimism about their own futures, and Minnesotans were near the bottom at No. 48.

Cheer up, folks – Gallup says it’s going to be OK.

The findings were based on interviews with more than 530,000 people across all states since 2011.

Here’s where Minnesota and North Dakota ranks in the 13 “forward-looking” metrics the study used to determine our futures:

Economic confidence

Minnesota: No. 1

North Dakota: No. 4

Job-creation index

Minnesota: No. 10

North Dakota: No. 1

Employed full time

Minnesota: No. 8

North Dakota: No. 1

Standard of living optimism

Minnesota: No. 19

North Dakota: No. 2

City/area optimism

Minnesota: No. 6

North Dakota: No. 14

Nonsmokers

Minnesota: No. 7

North Dakota: No. 16

Easy to find clean, safe water

Minnesota: No. 2

North Dakota: No. 25

Future life evaluation

Minnesota: No. 48

North Dakota: No. 37

Visited dentist in last year

Minnesota: No. 5

North Dakota: No. 18

Low obesity

Minnesota: No. 12

North Dakota: No. 38

Learned something new yesterday

Minnesota: No. 6

North Dakota: No. 11

Manager treats you like a partner, not a boss

Minnesota: No. 12

North Dakota: No. 2

Easy to find a safe place to exercise

Minnesota: No. 1

North Dakota: No. 20


Readers can reach Marino Eccher at (701) 241-5502

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