Most Diverse Cities In South Carolina For 2020

We used data and science to determine the most diverse cities in South Carolina.

Editor’s Note: We updated this article for 2020. This is our sixth time ranking the most diverse places in South Carolina.

Most Diverse Cities In South Carolina

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Race relations in America seem to be hitting a tipping point.

While we still haven't dealt with racism as a society, the election of Donald Trump to the presidency has only flamed the tensions that have been mounting for years.

Part of the reason for that tension? The country as a whole continues to self segregate across race, income, and party lines. But it's not all bad on the race relations front.

There are parts of South Carolina where there's a high level of diversity -- where people of all walks of life come together. We decided to shine a light on those places today.

Using a standard measure of diversity, we ranked all 65 cities in South Carolina from most to least diverse.

Here are the 10 most diverse places in South Carolina for 2020:

  1. North Charleston (Photos)
  2. Greenwood (Photos)
  3. Central (Photos)
  4. Columbia (Photos)
  5. Rock Hill (Photos)
  6. Greer (Photos)
  7. Sumter (Photos)
  8. Spartanburg (Photos)
  9. Laurens (Photos)
  10. Dillon (Photos)

So what city is the most diverse in South Carolina? According to the most Census data, North Charleston took the number one over all spot for diversity in South Carolina.

Read on below to see how we crunched the numbers and how your town ranked. To see where South Carolina ranked as a state, we have a ranking of the most diverse states in Ameria.

And if you already knew these places were diverse, check out:

The 10 Most Diverse Places In South Carolina For 2020

North Charleston, SC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 109,886

HHI: 3,635
% White: 37.9%
% African American: 45.5%
% Asian: 2.1%
More on North Charleston: PhotosData

North Charleston is the third-largest city in the U.S. state of South Carolina, with incorporated areas in Berkeley, Charleston, and Dorchester counties. On June 12, 1972, the city of North Charleston was incorporated and was rated as the ninth-largest city in South Carolina. As of the 2010 Census, North Charleston had a population of 97,471, growing to an estimated population of 108,304 in 2015, and with a current area of more than 76.6 square miles. As defined by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, for use by the U.S. Census Bureau and other U.S. Government agencies for statistical purposes only, North Charleston is included within the Charleston-North Charleston-Summerville metropolitan area and the Charleston-North Charleston urban area. North Charleston is one of the state's major industrial centers and is the state's top city in gross retail sales.

Greenwood, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 23,230

HHI: 3,791
% White: 41.2%
% African American: 44.4%
% Asian: 1.8%
More on Greenwood: PhotosData

Central, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 5,241

HHI: 3,922
% White: 57.4%
% African American: 18.8%
% Asian: 4.6%
More on Central: PhotosData

Central is a town in Pickens County, South Carolina, United States. As of the 2010 census, the population was 5,159, roughly 3,000 of which were considered permanent residents. Contrary to its name, it is not near the center of South Carolina. It received its name from its geographic location, being the halfway or central point between Atlanta and Charlotte along the former Atlanta and Richmond Air-Line Railway line. The primary campus of Southern Wesleyan University is located east of the downtown area.

Columbia, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 133,352

HHI: 4,035
% White: 48.8%
% African American: 40.2%
% Asian: 2.7%
More on Columbia: PhotosData

Columbia is the capital and second largest city of the U.S. state of South Carolina, with a population estimate of 134,309 as of 2016. The city serves as the county seat of Richland County, and a portion of the city extends into neighboring Lexington County. It is the center of the Columbia metropolitan statistical area, which had a population of 767,598 as of the 2010 United States Census, growing to 817,488 by July 1, 2016, according to 2015 U.S. Census estimates. The name Columbia is a poetic term used for the United States, originating from the name of Christopher Columbus.

Rock Hill, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 71,903

HHI: 4,098
% White: 50.2%
% African American: 39.2%
% Asian: 2.1%
More on Rock Hill: PhotosData

Rock Hill is the largest city in York County, South Carolina, United States and the fifth-largest city in the state. It is also the fourth-largest city of the Charlotte metropolitan area, behind Charlotte, Concord, and Gastonia. As of the 2010 Census, the population was 66,154. In 2016, the population had increased to 72,937.

Greer, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 29,717

HHI: 4,142
% White: 59.9%
% African American: 16.7%
% Asian: 5.1%
More on Greer: PhotosData

Greer is a city in Greenville and Spartanburg counties in the U.S. state of South Carolina. The population was 25,515 as of the 2010 census and had risen to an estimated 28,365 as of 2015. Each day, more than three times that number of people pass through the city on the two highways which run through the city. The majority of the city is in Greenville County and is part of the Greenville-Anderson-Mauldin Metropolitan Statistical Area.The city is additionally part of the Greenville-Spartanburg-Anderson, SC Combined Statistical Area in Upstate South Carolina.

Sumter, SC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 39,964

HHI: 4,190
% White: 42.7%
% African American: 48.4%
% Asian: 1.8%
More on Sumter: PhotosData

Sumter is the county seat of Sumter County, South Carolina, United States. Known as the Sumter Metropolitan Statistical Area, the namesake county adjoins Clarendon and Lee to form the core of Sumter-Lee-Clarendon tri-county area of South Carolina, an area that includes the three counties in the east central Piedmont. The U.S. Census Bureau estimated the city's population was 39,643 at the 2000 census. The 2010 census puts the city at 40,524.

Spartanburg, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 37,370

HHI: 4,264
% White: 44.4%
% African American: 47.6%
% Asian: 2.0%
More on Spartanburg: PhotosData

Spartanburg is the most populous city in and the seat of Spartanburg County, South Carolina, United States, and the 12th-largest city by population in the state. The city of Spartanburg has a municipal population of 37,013, and Spartanburg County has an urban population of 180,786 as of the 2010 census. The Spartanburg Metropolitan Statistical Area, including Spartanburg and Union counties, had a population of 317,057 as of the 2010-2014 American Community Survey 5-Year Estimates.

Laurens, SC

Source: Public domain
Overall SnackAbility


Population: 8,914

HHI: 4,276
% White: 53.1%
% African American: 37.5%
% Asian: 0.9%
More on Laurens: PhotosData

Laurens is a city in Laurens County, South Carolina, United States. The population was 9,139 at the 2010 census. It is the county seat of Laurens County.

Dillon, SC

Overall SnackAbility


Population: 6,456

HHI: 4,302
% White: 40.6%
% African American: 51.3%
% Asian: 0.0%
More on Dillon: PhotosData

How we determined the most diverse cities in South Carolina for 2020

We still believe in the accuracy of data -- especially from the census. So that's where we went to get the breakdown of race across South Carolina.

That lead us to the Census's most recently available data, the 2014-2018 American Community Survey data from the US Census.

Specifically, we looked at table B03002: HISPANIC OR LATINO ORIGIN BY RACE. Here are the category names as defined by the Census:

  • White alone*
  • Black or African American alone*
  • American Indian and Alaska Native alone*
  • Asian alone*
  • Native Hawaiian and Other Pacific Islander alone*
  • Some other race alone*
  • Two or more races*
  • Hispanic or Latino
* Not hispanic or latino

We limited our analysis to non-CDPs with a population greater than 5,000 people. That left us with 65 cities.

We then calculated the HHI for each city by finding the racial breakdown of a city in percent terms, squaring them, and then adding the squares together. This left us with scores ranging from 3,635 (North Charleston) to 8,171 (Tega Cay).

Finally, we ranked each city based on the HHI with a lower score being more diverse than a high score. North Charleston took the distinction of being the most diverse, while Tega Cay was the least diverse city. You can download the data here.

Read on for more information on how the cities in South Carolina ranked for diversity or, for a more general take on diversity in america, head over to our ranking of the most diverse cities in America.

There You Have It - Diversity Across South Carolina

If you're looking for a scientific breakdown of diversity across South Carolina, this is an accurate list.

If you're curious enough, here are the least diverse places in South Carolina:

  1. Tega Cay
  2. North Myrtle Beach
  3. Mount Pleasant

For more South Carolina reading, check out:

Detailed List Of The Most Diverse Cities In South Carolina For 2020

Rank City Population HHI
1 North Charleston, SC 109,886 3,635
2 Greenwood, SC 23,230 3,791
3 Central, SC 5,241 3,922
4 Columbia, SC 133,352 4,035
5 Rock Hill, SC 71,903 4,098
6 Greer, SC 29,717 4,142
7 Sumter, SC 39,964 4,190
8 Spartanburg, SC 37,370 4,264
9 Laurens, SC 8,914 4,276
10 Dillon, SC 6,456 4,302
11 Batesburg-Leesville, SC 5,424 4,355
12 Florence, SC 37,802 4,377
13 Georgetown, SC 8,936 4,393
14 Fountain Inn, SC 8,684 4,395
15 Beaufort, SC 13,336 4,398
16 Mauldin, SC 25,009 4,452
17 Lancaster, SC 9,150 4,459
18 Union, SC 7,878 4,481
19 Gaffney, SC 12,526 4,530
20 Newberry, SC 10,289 4,581
21 Hartsville, SC 7,658 4,588
22 Walterboro, SC 5,503 4,592
23 Goose Creek, SC 41,339 4,621
24 Irmo, SC 12,087 4,624
25 Clover, SC 5,955 4,641
26 Hollywood, SC 5,119 4,668
27 Clinton, SC 8,508 4,685
28 West Columbia, SC 17,296 4,705
29 Abbeville, SC 5,079 4,732
30 Camden, SC 7,060 4,738
31 Port Royal, SC 12,446 4,753
32 Hanahan, SC 22,963 4,777
33 Anderson, SC 27,129 4,798
34 Conway, SC 22,661 4,840
35 Hardeeville, SC 5,836 4,946
36 Cheraw, SC 5,701 4,948
37 Bennettsville, SC 8,308 4,966
38 Simpsonville, SC 21,423 4,977
39 Greenville, SC 65,727 4,979
40 Darlington, SC 6,034 5,027
41 York, SC 8,062 5,056
42 Myrtle Beach, SC 31,783 5,077
43 Aiken, SC 30,464 5,139
44 Seneca, SC 8,290 5,192
45 Summerville, SC 50,894 5,314
46 Cayce, SC 13,621 5,328
47 Bluffton, SC 18,835 5,453
48 North Augusta, SC 22,603 5,465
49 Chester, SC 5,433 5,509
50 Moncks Corner, SC 10,169 5,521
51 Charleston, SC 133,762 5,582
52 Fort Mill, SC 15,924 5,671
53 Forest Acres, SC 10,433 5,692
54 Orangeburg, SC 13,120 5,837
55 Travelers Rest, SC 5,063 5,941
56 Lexington, SC 21,040 5,980
57 Hilton Head Island, SC 39,820 6,499
58 Clemson, SC 15,966 6,499
59 Lake City, SC 6,658 6,649
60 Easley, SC 20,784 6,702
61 James Island, SC 12,010 6,747
62 Marion, SC 6,548 6,936
63 Mount Pleasant, SC 83,700 8,024
64 North Myrtle Beach, SC 15,862 8,170
65 Tega Cay, SC 9,954 8,171

How Is The Area In ?

About Chris Kolmar

Chris Kolmar has been in the real estate business for almost ten years now. He originally worked for Movoto Real Estate as the director of marketing before founding HomeSnacks.

He believes the key to finding the right place to live comes down to looking at the data, reading about things to do, and, most importantly, checking it out yourself before you move.

If you've been looking for a place to live in the past several years, you've probably stumbled upon his writing already.

You can find out more about him on LinkedIn or his website.