Baby names go in and out of fashion, and there’s no better city to see this than the ever-changing Berlin. With it’s multicultural mix of hipsters and young families, Berlin’s baby names show the fluent demographics of the city.
I’ve downloaded the official census data for baby names in all of Berlin’s districts from 2012 to 2017 and found some interesting trends.
Note: You can find the data and all code to generate the visualizations in this Github repository.
The most popular baby names
First off, which names do Berliners choose most often for their offspring?
For girls, Marie is the clear winner and has been a favorite for many years. The follow-ups show that popular names often come in variations, such as Marie/Maria or Sophie/Sophia. Overall, all-time classics dominate the top 10.
For boys, Alexander is the most popular name. There’s a bit more variation here: The names consist of mix of classics (Alexander, Maximilian), fashionable names (Noah) and old-fashioned german names (Karl, Oskar), a recent trend.
So what are the hippest names? Which names are going out of fashion? Here are the baby names which have increased and decreased most in numbers between 2012 and 2017.
The trendiest girl’s name is Mira, which has almost tripled in popularity since 2012. But it’s follow-ups are also growing quickly - especially Emilia, which is already the fifth most common name. Sidenote: From the trends it seems that names containing the letters i, l and a are very much in fashion right now.
On the other side we see that the favorites Sophie and Marie are quickly losing ground. If this goes on and Emilia continues its run, she might soon take over the top position from Marie.
The most popular boy’s name is Karl, spearheading the recent popularity of old german names. Many of these are also chosen in an english or international form, such as Henry instead of the german Heinrich.
The names that are losing popularity are the ones that used to be trendy some years ago, such as Luca, Lucas, or Joel.
Most popular names in districts
So far we only had a look at Berlin as a whole. But each of its districts is quite unique, which, it turns out, you can see in the district’s baby names.
I’ve created a map where you can explore this interactively. The map shows the names with the highest frequency in each district, divided by their frequency in all of Berlin.
That’s it for now! I will be adding further visualizations soon. Check out the accompanying repository for more details on the data and on how to generate the plots in this post.