Data Science Reveals How Many British Fried Chicken Shops Are Named After US States

By James O Malley on at

Open data is brilliant. Not only can it be used to hold the government to account, or to enable scientists around the world to gain important new insights on a wide range of topics... but it turns out that cracking open your data and sharing it with the world can also enable this one guy on Twitter to figure out how many British fried chicken shops are named after American states.

Late last night data scientist Gwilym Lockwood took his Twitter followers on an intriguing journey - and asked a question that Londoners will have asked themselves regularly.

It's an intriguing question, and magically, the Foods Standards Agency, which licenses every restaurant in the UK, had the data to answer the question.

So he had the data - but what's the answer?

Yep, it turns out that Tennessee is the most common state for naming chicken shops - apart from Kentucky, of course. And yes, it appears that Michigan Fried Chicken is a thing, apparently.

Gwilym also plotted the locations on a map of the UK - to reveal that London and Manchester are the UK capitals of state-named fried chicken.

Inexplicably too, apparently Oldham has six chicken shops in such close proximity. Which perhaps explains why with so many other states taken, someone thought that Michigan was a good name.

So there you go - a new insight into British life, thanks to data science.