That is Tobler's 1st Law of Geography
Do you know Carl Lee's19th Law of Geography (or indeed any of his first 18....)
Ben Hennig's blog provides more information on a film, which he made with Carl Lee, a lecturer in Geography at Sheffield College, and Professor Danny Dorling.
It looks at the impact of Higher Education on a city, and was premiered at a special event in the city in September 2012.
You can watch the film here.
As Ben says:
The thinking behind this short film is to show that so much of what is
studied in geography is part of a complex, evolving complexity.
Individual ‘facts’ can be linked to other information to help build up a
wider and better understanding of the world in which we live. Carl
starts his new geography students off by suggesting that it is a ‘join
the dots’ subject; all those snippets of information whirling around the
world waiting to be connected in some way so a more complete
understanding can be developed.
However one of the fundamental principles of geography is that
‘Everything is related to everything else (but near things are more
related than distant things)’. This is known as Waldo Tobler’s
first law of geography. It has been thought that globalisation and
particularly the internet would lead to the ‘death of distance’, the
‘Flat World’ propounded by Thomas Friedman. Such thinking is an outright challenge to Tobler’s law. It is true that the distant can now be near; in Sheffield
that is increasingly felt by the rapid growth in non-UK students
studying in the city. We can Skype, surf and stumble our way through a
more complex world than we ever imagined even a couple decades ago and
all from our smart phones where-ever we are.
Perhaps more pertinently economic forces that develop far from Sheffield
shape the city’s fortunes. Whether that is the Chinese savings that
provided a significant amount of the initial capital to fuel the
ballooning private debt that has led to Sheffield and the UK mired in
economic recession at the present time. Or it may be demand for basic
food stuffs from a growing and increasingly wealthy global population
that is helping to drive up the price of many staple food in the UK.
Useful resource for exploring ideas of globalisation, networks, urban change and inequality.