Jersey City has been ranked the second-most ethnically diverse city in the U.S. by the personal finance website In a survey of 501 cities across the nation, Jersey City—with a population of 268,578—was second to only Germantown, Maryland, in its degrees of ethno-racial, linguistic, and birthplace diversity. It is New Jersey’s second largest city–– Newark has 301,055 people––and the 83rd-largest city in the United States.

“The main benefits of living in an ethnically diverse city include interpersonal contact with others whose identities, beliefs, and behavior differ from your own,” said Rice University sociology Professor Tony N. Brown. “To sharpen that point, the only way to expand one’s worldview is to see the world from someone else’s perspective, especially when the other person is not like you. Ethnic diversity becomes the spice of life, figuratively and literally. 

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“Just imagine the cultural and food scenes in ethnically diverse cities. There are nearly limitless opportunities to learn about and from others: what they eat, what they celebrate, and what they believe.

“For many white individuals growing up in racially and ethnically homogeneous surroundings, rapid changes in a city’s ethnic composition are perceived typically as a threat. The threat emanates from a sense of unexpected change related to growth in non-white populations. For many marginalized and underrepresented racial minority groups (i.e., Blacks, Asians, Hispanics, and Native Americans), rapid changes in a city’s ethnic composition present a political opportunity to coalesce around shared grievances generated by white supremacy.”

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