Birmingham is a city and metropolitan borough in the West Midlands County of England. It is the most populous British city outside London with a population of 1,016,800 (2008 estimate), and lies at the heart of the West Midlands conurbation, the United Kingdom's second most populous urban area, with a population of 2,284,093 (2001 census). Birmingham's metropolitan area, which includes surrounding towns to which it is closely tied through commuting, is the United Kingdom's second most populous with a population of 3,683,000.
In 2010, Birmingham was ranked as the 55th-most livable city in the world, according to the Mercer Index of worldwide standards of living. The Big City plan is a large redevelopment plan currently underway in the city centre with the aim of making Birmingham one of the top 20 most livable cities in the world within 20 years. People from Birmingham are known as ‘Brummies', a term derived from the city's nickname of 'Brum'. This may originate from the city's dialect name, Brummagem, which may in turn have been derived from one of the city's earlier names, ‘Bromwicham'. There is a distinctive Brummie dialect and accent, both of which differ from the adjacent Black County.