11th Annual Rankings Report: Metro and Global Rankings


http://businessfacilities.com/2015/07/metro-and-global-rankings/
We’ve revamped our Metro and Global rankings this year to include some new technology oriented benchmarks.

Business Facilities’ 11th Annual Rankings Report: Metro and Global Rankings

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Business Facilities’ 11th Annual Rankings Report: Metro and Global Rankings

By Business Facilities Staff
from the July/August 2015 Issue annual-rankings-report

We’ve revamped our Metro and Global rankings this year to include some new technology oriented benchmarks. The new Metro category entries include Advanced Manufacturing (Specialization), Tech Jobs Leaders, Fastest Broadband and STEM Leaders. Our Global Rankings this year also include a new ranking for Leading ICT Hubs (European Cities).

metro-and-global-rankingsNASHVILLE, TN TAKES THE LEAD IN ECONOMIC GROWTH POTENTIAL

Nashville, TN has been a rising star for several years in our Metro ranking for Economic Growth Potential. In 2015, Tennessee’s capital finally captured the flag in this flagship category.

What sets the Nashville area apart as one of the strongest, most vibrant economies in the U.S.? Its obvious distinct advantages include an ideal geographic location in the heart of the U.S. population base; a skilled workforce fueled by 100,000 college students in the region; operating costs and cost of living almost 10 percent below the U.S. average (Nashville’s cost of doing business is 88.5 percent of the national average); and a quality of life whose tone is set by being one of the top centers in the world for the creative class.

But the Music City is much more than that: Nashville has become a world-class healthcare hub.

Nashville is home to a diverse health care cluster with leaders in a number of industry niches that impact the health care landscape locally, nationally and internationally. The Nashville health care industry contributes an overall economic benefit of nearly $30 billion and more than 200,000 jobs to the local economy annually. Globally, Nashville’s health care industry generates more than $70 billion in revenue and more than 400,000 jobs.

metro-and-global-rankingsNashville-based HCA accounts for almost five percent of all in-patient care in the United States, one of more than 15 publicly traded health care companies located in Nashville. More than 250 health care companies have operations in Nashville and work on a multistate, national or international basis. Nashville also is home to more than 300 professional service firms (e.g., accounting, architecture, finance, legal) that provide expertise in the health care industry.

Clinical provider job growth in Nashville has outpaced the nation (35 percent) and Tennessee (40 percent). Nashville rode the 1990s health care boom to become a major industry center, with 50 percent growth in clinical provider jobs between 1995 and 2008, according to the Nashville Health Care Council. A survey of Nashville Health Care Council member CEOs shows great confidence in the Nashville market; 95 percent indicated that a Nashville headquarters location is important to their company’s positive performance.

Brookings Institute also named Nashville the No. 1 region in the nation in 2015 for job growth in advanced industries since the recession, and the growth is largely thanks to motor vehicle manufacturers.

metro-and-global-rankingsStartup activity increased significantly in 32 of the 50 U.S. states last year; and 18 of the nation’s top 40 metropolitan areas also saw increases in new venture activity, according to the 2015 Kauffman Index: Startup Activity. The Kauffman Foundation’s report also delineated some fascinating trends in entrepreneurship: the aging of the U.S. population has spurred in increase in average age of new entrepreneurs. Individuals aged 55 to 64 now account for 25.8 percent of new entrepreneurs in 2015, up from 14.8 percent in 1997. Immigrants also account for a rapidly growing share of new entrepreneurs, nearly 30 percent, up from 13.3 percent in Kauffman’s 1997 Index.

So this year, we’ve included a Top 10 Cities for Startups ranking showcasing the cities that are putting out the welcome mat for startup and entrepreneurs.

It’s not surprising to see dynamic tech hubs like Austin, TX, San Jose, CA and San Francisco, CA make the list, but Miami deserves a tip of the hat for its strong second-place showing. A key indicator used by Kauffman to track entrepreneurial activity is what they call startup density, or the number of startups per 100,000 people in a metro. Miami notched an impressive 247.6 startups per 100k.

metro-and-global-rankingsA good example of the red-hot entrepreneurial scene in Miami can be found at the stylish co-working space, Pipeline, which overlooks a scenic bay in the bustling Brickell district in Downtown Miami. According to a recent profile in Forbes, tenants at Pipeline represent the diversity that embodies Miami. Entrepreneurs at Pipeline hail from all over the globe and from a range of different industries including technology, media, legal and even private equity. The influx of talented newcomers is credited to Miami’s growing reputation as an international hub, the U.S. gateway to South and Central America. Up-and-comers in the startups top 10 include two TX cities, Houston and San Antonio, as well as Denver, CO and San Diego, CA.

This year’s Job Growth Leaders ranking includes perennial growth venues like Boulder, CO, Provo, UT and McCallen, TX, but the top 10 includes some rising stars that have surprised just about everyone with the speed and success of their recent growth. Among the eyebrow-raisers are Cape Coral, FL and Grand Rapids, MI. Both of these areas were clobbered by the Great Recession (Cape Coral by the collapse of the housing market in Florida and Grand Rapids by the auto industry implosion in Michigan], which makes their dynamic recovery even more impressive.

metro-rankingsThe Grand Rapids area, home to more than a million people, is enjoying an across-the-board surge that is lifting employment in all sectors, including manufacturing, services and construction. Nicknamed the Furniture City, Grand Rapids is home to five of the world’s leading office furniture companies. The MSA also has a strong position in aviation, biotech and education. Although Michigan has made great progress in recovering from an unemployment rate which notched double-digits in 2010, it’s not a stretch to say Grand Rapids is leading the charge with a jobless rate that recently dipped to 3.9 percent.

The defense contractor Plasan North America is moving its headquarters from Vermont to suburban Grand Rapids, bringing 120 white-collar jobs and $12.3-million in investment. That’s in addition to 400 high-tech automotive manufacturing jobs recently added at a subsidiary of Plasan nearby.

Grand Rapids employers also said to be in hiring mode include Steelcase, Spectrum Health, Mercy Health, Amway and Cascade Engineering, an auto products manufacturer.

The job growth in Cape Coral, FL corresponds to a rapid increase in population, which has been growing at a clip of nearly three percent per year for the past two years and now totals more than 680,000. A recent Employment Outlook Survey from Milwaukee-based staffing giant ManpowerGroup, gave its top ranking to the Cape Coral MSA. To gauge companies’ hiring plans, Manpower surveyed more than 18,000 US employers, gathering data in the top 100 metro areas. It used a research firm that quizzed hiring managers and human resource professionals about their plans for the first quarter of 2015.

metro-rankingsAccording to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, job growth in Cape Coral is much more than new retail shops filling properties that were foreclosed in the Recession. The jobs surge is lifting all sectors, including professional business services, manufacturing, health care and construction. Hertz announced in 2014 it is moving its headquarters to Estero, FL (inside the Cape Coral MSA), creating dozens of new jobs. A new Sam’s Club opened in Cape Coral n January and jobs at a mega-Walmart will arrive this year. A shoe manufacturer, Camuto Group, also is hiring.

The ManpowerGroup survey also reflected brisk expansion in McAllen, TX, our eighth-placed metro for job growth. About 29 percent of employers in McCallen told the group they expected to hire during the first quarter of 2015. The job openings spanned a wide range of sectors, including construction, durable goods manufacturing, transportation, utilities and professional/ business services. There has also been a lot of recent retail construction in McCallen, including an expanding new restaurant chain called Texas Roadhouse. Located near the U.S.-Mexico border, McCallen’s economy also benefits from a lot of cross-border trade.

metro-rankingsTexas and Florida dominated the results in our Fastest Growing Metros category, with three Florida metros—The Villages, Cape Coral and Naples—ranking first, sixth and tenth, respectively, and three Texas metros—Austin, Odessa and Midland—coming in third, fourth and ninth, respectively. The results in this category also confirmed that Myrtle Beach, SC, in second place, is booming.

L.A. IS FOOD PROCESSING KING

The food manufacturing industry in our top-ranked city for Food Processing Employment Leaders is the metropolis of Los Angeles, which is in a tight contest with a growing hub in Toronto and the traditional food processing crossroads of Chicago as king of the foodies.

Like its extensive geographic sprawl, Los Angeles County’s food processing reach stretches from salsa to sodas, from beer to bread, and includes hundreds of specialty processors that locate near each other to swap freshly prepared ingredients. The local industry benefits from a large concentration of suppliers, distributors, local agriculture and fresh ingredients, national distribution centers and a high level of experienced workers whose creativity brings great products to market successfully.

metro-rankingsAccess to wide varieties of fresh produce grown in abundance, locally and in nearby counties facilitates local clusters of established food processing businesses that are a source of ingredients and supplies. Fast and efficient transportation and logistics infrastructure also fuels the growth of this industry, as well as international markets (L.A. County is a leading international trade center). Overseas food brands often setup operations in L.A. County to serve the U.S. market. The availability of renewable energy is a big plus in L.A. as well a strong labor force and a huge, culturally diverse population of 10 million who are consumers of a wide variety of foods.

Second-place finisher Toronto’s food and beverage cluster is a driver of Ontario’s economy, with annual sales topping $20 billion, according to the Ontario Ministry of Agriculture & Food. A recent labor force survey indicated there are 1,149 food and beverage manufacturing establishments employing over 51,000 people in the Greater Toronto region. Small businesses engaged in food and beverage manufacturing continue to account for a larger share of total establishments in the food and beverage sector. In 2013, small businesses with less than 100 employees accounted for 90.2 percent of total food and beverage establishments in Toronto, compared to 88.4 percent in 2012.

top-medical-device-hubsNEWWithin Ontario, Toronto dominates the provincial food industry with more than half of all the food processing in the province taking place within the Greater Toronto region. Almost 50 percent of Ontario’s employment in the food/beverage sector is in Greater Toronto.

Chicago, our third-ranked city for Food Processing Employment Leaders, has long been a center for the conversion of raw farm products into edible goods. Best known for its dominance in meatpacking, since the 1880’s Chicago has also been home to leading firms in other areas of the food processing industry, including cereals, baked goods and candy.

MEMPHIS, ANCHORAGE AND LOUISVILLE LEAD AIR CARGO HUBS

The presence of the two premier global players in overnight deliveries ensure that Memphis, TN and Louisville, KY have a permanent place in the top tier of our annual Logistics Leaders (Air Cargo) category. Memphis, perennially our top-ranked U.S. air cargo hub, and Louisville, ranked third, also make the top 10 in our global logistics ranking.

food-processing-employ-leadersNEWAs the global cargo hub for FedEx, Memphis International Airport remains the busiest air cargo airport for tonnage in the country and second busiest in the world behind only Hong Kong.

Companies enjoy immediate access to all four modes of transportation within 20 miles of Memphis International Airport: I-40 is the third-busiest trucking corridor in the United States; one of three major interstates in Memphis; Memphis is home to five Class I railroads (BNSF, CSX, Union Pacific, Norfolk Southern and Canadian National); and The Port of Memphis is the fourth largest inland port in the U.S.

More than 10 percent of Memphis’ workforce is employed in transportation, warehousing and utilities, the highest share among the top 100 MSAs in the U.S.

Our second-place air cargo hub is the gateway between the Far East/Pacific Rim and North America. Ted Stevens International Airport in Anchorage, AK also is a major hub FedEX and UPS. Not surprisingly, Anchorage handles infinitely more packages (2.48 million tons of cargo in 2014) than passengers.

metro-rankingsLouisville, ranked third (shipping an estimated 2.3 million tons in 2014), is the global freight hub for UPS. The UPS facility adjacent to Louisville International Airport is the most automated package-handling facility in the world, a vast maze of chutes-and-ladders package routing ramps that can handle more than 400,000 packages per hour, employs more than 20,000, and occupies 5.2 million square feet.

Miami International Airport, our fourth-ranked air cargo hub with (an estimated 2 million tons of cargo in 2014, is a major gateway to both the Caribbean and Latin America. Miami’s stock in air freight has been growing consistently for decades; 96 different carriers have air freight operations at the airport. Los Angeles International Airport, ranked fifth and moving 1.8 million tons of cargo in 2014, boasts more than 2 million square feet of cargo facilities and is a leading staging point for transpacific operations for both American and Asian cargo carriers.

LEADERS IN SUSTAINABILITY

The ARCADIS Sustainable Cities Index has emerged as the most credible benchmark for evaluating leaders in sustainability, a category that can shape-shift depending on how you define the word. ARCADIS draws on data from reliable global sources including the United Nations, World Bank, World Health Organization and International Labor Organization, among others. The group looks closely at 50 cities from 31 countries ranking them across a range of indicators to estimate the sustainability of each city. The cities are evaluated and ranked in a bevy of indices that cover numerous social, economic and environmental factors. Here’s just a small sampling of what goes into the Index: city energy consumption and renewable energy share; recycling rates; greenhouse gas emissions; natural catastrophe risk; drinking water, sanitation and air pollution; transportation infrastructure (rail, air, other public transport and commuting time); GDP per capita and energy efficiency.

metro-rankingsToronto tops the chart of Sustainable Cities (it was the highest-ranked North American city and came in 12th globally. Boston, Chicago and New York notched second, third and fourth-place results, respectively. Boston scored well on education indicators factored into the results.

Chicago, with the largest number of LEED-certified buildings, also is home to numerous clean energy companies. Chicago has made sustainability a key focus of its urban policies, leading the way in implementing some innovative environmental initiatives. Sustainable Chicago 2015 is a plan to advance Chicago’s goal of becoming the most sustainable city in the country.

The plan focuses on improving citywide energy efficiency and promoting diversified transit options; it also will launch citywide recycling. The plan aims to establish Chicago as a hub for the growing sustainable economy and accelerate it by assisting people and companies in adopting sustainable practices. More than $8 billion in public/private investments will be made over the next decade to facilitate Sustainable Chicago 2015.

TOP LIFE-SCIENCE CLUSTERS AND MEDICAL DEVICE HUBS

metro-rankingsAccording to JLL’s Global Life Sciences Cluster Report, the most comprehensive look at this sector, over the past few years there has been a significant increase in the attention life sciences companies are paying to their facilities and operations.

Outside of research and development, real estate and facility costs are among some of the biggest expenses for life sciences companies. Therefore, many of the industry’s large and medium-sized players have been consolidating, focusing on asset disposal and improvements to building efficiency as a means of cost savings. Markets and geographic clusters that are dominated by large campuses and headquarter operations have been subject to the industry’s general downsizing over the past few years.

JLL also reports there has been a shift in the industry from one driven by Big Pharma to one where mid-market companies are driving growth and activity; thus, the types and sizes of facilities in demand have shifted. Large campuses are being parceled into singular facilities for single- or multi-tenant use. Incubator-style buildings that offer flexible space options and access to shared laboratory services like inventory management and glass washing are in high-demand.

metro-rankingsLife sciences clusters in the United States, Canada and Europe that are founded on research institutions and smaller tenant make-up, such as San Diego, Boston, Montreal, Cambridge and Basel are thriving, and emerging clusters in Asia are building innovation cities and incubator-type facilities, geared toward this new era of the industry.

Raleigh-Durham, NC, Boston and San Diego are the top-ranked metros in our new Life Sciences Clusters category, while Minneapolis, Boston and San Jose head the list of our Top Medical Device Hubs.

Minneapolis is the anchor of one of the strongest medical device hubs in the world. Nearly 25 percent of employment in Greater Minneapolis-St. Paul is centered on the medical technology sector, a larger percentage than technology workers in the Bay Area in California). With nearly 27,000 medical technology jobs, Minnesota is second only to California is first per capita. Estimates by trade association LifeScience Alley put the total life science employment at over 300,000. Minnesota has a history of clinicians who have been involved in medical device development, including the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN, the largest integrated medical center in the world (Mayo Clinic, Saint Mary’s Hospital, and Rochester Methodist Hospital). Destination Medical Center (DMC), a $5- billion economic development initiative in Minnesota includes $3.5-billion in new Mayo-financed capital investments on its Rochester campus over the next 20 years, combined with an estimated $2.1 billion in additional leveraged private investment.

metro-rankingsThe University of Minnesota’s Medical Devices Center (MDC) is an interdisciplinary program that sits within the Institute for Engineering in Medicine and combines basic research, applied and translational research, education and training, and outreach and public engagement all related to medical devices. The Medical Devices Center moved into its new 8,000-square-foot home located in the Mayo Building on the East Bank Campus in April 2013. It serves as a location to connect engineers and scientists, clinical physicians, and surgeons to develop solutions to healthcare problems.

In the Boston metro area, our second-ranked Medical Devices Hub, this sector continues to expand. A good example can be found at UMass Lowell, which has opened business incubators aimed at growing startups in the fields of medical devices and technology. The UMass Lowell Innovation Hub and the Massachusetts Medical Device Development Center (M2D2) business incubators opened June 1.

The incubators encompass 22,000 square feet at 110 Canal in Lowell, and tenants are currently moving into both spaces. Three unnamed tenants are currently housed in each of the incubators to date, said Steven Tello, UMass Lowell’s associate vice chancellor of entrepreneurship and economic development.

metro-rankingsThis new space complements the existing medical device incubator at the Wannalancit Business Center, also in Lowell, which houses 15 medical-device startups to date. The incubators are located at the former Freudenberg Nonwovens mill, which is one of several former mills being converted for commercial and residential use at the 15-acre site.

The Massachusetts life sciences industry is rapidly expanding. Centered in Cambridge, the concentration of life sciences companies is impressive, with large investments in additional lab and office space supporting the continued growth of the product pipelines.

One of the two largest medical device manufacturers/companies in the world has its world headquarters in Boston. Boston Scientific is a significant contributor to the local medtech industry. They have a history of rebounding and their continued investment in early- to mid-stage companies prior to acquisition.

metro-rankingsThe next-generation of medical products is going to look more like mobile applications than the medical devices that have been developed over the past twenty years. Massachusetts’s access to Harvard and MIT, to say nothing of WPI, Boston University, Boston College, and Northeastern among 20 other world-class universities, provides access to this critical resource in a way that few regions can match. This academic concentration, coupled with access to Mass General, Beth Israel Deaconess, Brigham and Women’s and Tufts Medical Center gives a tremendous opportunity for emerging technology to connect directly with some of the best hospitals and doctors in the country.

CALIFORNIA CITIES TOP VC LIST

The National Venture Capital Association tracks the amount of VC money invested across the U.S. Not surprisingly, tech-strong California cities dominate the Top 10 Cities for Venture Capital ranking. San Francisco is the top-ranked city by far in the VC sweepstakes, netting nearly $15 billion in investments, more than twice the amount of second-place San Jose. Los Angeles, Oakland and San Diego also make the top 10, at fifth, seventh and tenth, respectively.

metro-rankingsVenture capital money also is flowing into Boston, New York, Seattle, Chicago and Washington D.C.

It’s no surprise that New York City sits as the pinnacle of our Top Financial Centers metro ranking, since NYC also is the leading global moolah hub. However, the news that San Francisco has vaulted into second place, over long-time leaders Chicago, Boston and the rapidly emerging hub in Toronto, may raise a few eyebrows in the green-eyeshade community.

Canada’s banking system, which traditional has been more conservative than the denizens of Wall Street, resisted the speculative orgy that nearly brought down the rest of the global financial system in 2008. So Canadian cities are well represented in our financial centers ranking, with four of them making the top 10-Toronto (no. 5), Vancouver (no. 7), Montreal (no. 8) and Calgary (no. 9).

KPMG’s Total Tax Index measures taxes levied on businesses, including income taxes, property taxes, capital taxes, sales taxes, miscellaneous local business taxes and statutory payroll-based taxes. This comprehensive evaluation provides a solid base for evaluating the Best Business Tax Climate for North American cities.

metro-rankingsOnce again, Canadian cities are well represented in this fiscal ranking; in fact, they dominate it: Toronto is our top ranked city for tax climate, followed by Vancouver and Montreal. Two of Ohio’s biggest cities, Cincinnati and Cleveland ranked fourth and fifth, respectively, while Atlanta, Baltimore, Pittsburgh, Charlotte and Minneapolis rounded out the top 10, in that order.

TECH JOBS ABUNDANT IN AUSTIN

The number of technology jobs in the Austin, TX—the top-ranked metro in our Tech Jobs Leaders category—area surged 4.7 percent during 2014, according to a report by the Austin Chamber of Commerce. The chamber reported that 5,000 tech companies employed more than 120,700 workers in the Austin area in 2014 — an increase of 5,400 jobs compared with the previous year.

The lion’s share of that increase was in technology manufacturing, the report said. More than 290 local technology manufacturers added 4,270 jobs, increasing total employment in that sector to nearly 34,100. The Austin area’s technology industry now accounts for 13.7 percent of all jobs in the region and the sector’s growth has outpaced all other industries by nearly 9 percentage points during the past five years. Tech employment has risen by 27.8 percent versus 18.5 percent for other industries during that five-year span, the Chamber reported.

Last year, local technology payrolls reached $11.9 billion, or 25 percent of the area’s total $47.7 billion. For all industries, the average annual salary in the Austin area was $54,104 last year, a 3.5 percent increase compared with 2013. The average technology job was $98,679, a 1.6 percent increase.

Since 2009, the average salary for all industries has risen 14 percent while the average tech salary surged 6.5 percent. Local technology salaries last year were 182.4 percent of the average for all industries compared with 196 percent during 2010 and 2011, the report indicates.

fastest-broadbandNEWThe explosion growth of tech jobs in Austin has brought with it a variety of employment opportunities, from coding to sales and marketing to growth hacking. Some of the most exciting startups in the Austin area are hiring right now, including several recently launched dot-coms.

Offers.com serves up deals and coupon codes for everything from clothing, electronics, home & garden, to travel deals. The site has savings deals from over 6,000 stores and brands. Offers.com has been profitable since launching and makes money via referral fees from brands and stores. The company is growing, and looking for candidates that make an impact on performance.

Last year, Home Improvement Leads connected 600,000 homeowners nationwide with contractors specializing in work like HVAC, solar panels, painting, roofing, siding, bathrooms remodeling. Home Improvement Leads operates a network of websites that helps homeowners assemble competitive quotes from contractors. This gives contractors a marketing channel for their services.

As the home of a number of renowned educational institutions, Raleigh, NC, which ranked second in our Tech Jobs Leader category, has emerged as the primary tech hub of the Southeast. With a lively tech industry, a historic downtown and a vast natural landscape, the city offers a comfortable and affordable mix of work resources and recreational activities.

U.S. RECOVERS IN GLOBAL COMPETITIVENESS AS FDI SURGES

metro-rankingsFor decades—at least since the end of World War II—the United States has dominated most assessments of Global Competitiveness, the most valid of which is the World Economic Forum’s evaluation of the top nations in terms of foreign direct investment. So it was shocking to just about everyone (especially Americans) when the U.S. got knocked off its traditional pedestal at the top of the Global Competitiveness standings during the Great Recession. Switzerland, which overtook the U.S. as the prime recipient of FDI, still holds the crown in the 2015 ranking, but we’re pleased to report that America is mounting a bit of a comeback. The United States has motored into third place, up from fifth a year ago.

According to the WEF, the U.S. surge was due to improvements in several areas, including institutional framework, business sophistication and innovation. However, WEF noted that it “still remains to be seen whether these improvements will be sufficient to drive economic recovery over the longer term.”

Switzerland topped the Global Competitiveness field for the sixth consecutive year, thanks to robust success in innovation, business sophistication, higher education and labor market efficiency, WEF found. But the evaluators also warned that business and research institutions in Switzerland may face difficulties in finding the talent they need to preserve their capacity for innovation.

metro-rankingsCentral and South America nations, absent from the top 10 in competitiveness, still need to enact significant structural reforms to break into the top tier in FDI. Latin America needs to address its productivity challenge and boost competitiveness to keep the positive economic momentum of past years from reversing course. According to the Forum, the region must implement structural reforms to improve the functioning of its markets and invest in infrastructure, skills development and innovation.

In Europe, there appears to be a sharp competitiveness divide between highly productive countries and those lagging behind in productivity. The WEF views this as an indicator that the EU countries with lower productivity have yet to implement the necessary structural reforms.

In our annual global ranking for Renewable Energy Investment Leaders, China and the United States remain neck and neck for the top slot, with the PRC again edging out the U.S. in our 2015 ranking. Germany, Italy and India surge into the top five in renewable energy investments.

metro-rankingsChina also is the top-ranked nation in our Global Auto Production Leaders category, which is based on passenger car production. Japan and Germany, in second and third place, respectively, also outpaced the United States. (Volkswagen recently overtook Toyota as the world’s best-selling automotive brand).

Europe’s top tech hubs were given the ranking treatment recently in a report listing each area by its strengths in development, networking, business and a slew of other categories. The report, a 140-page analysis called Mapping the European ICT Poles of Excellence: The Atlas of ICT Activity in Europe, was released by the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre. The study tracks R&D, innovation and business; while looking at the agglomeration of tech, internationalization and networking, and we used its results as the basis for a new global ranking, Leading ICT Hubs (European Cities).

metro-rankingsThe Joint Research Centre study puts Munich, Germany above all other European tech scenes, largely thanks to its strength in R&D and innovation networking systems. Inner London’s eastern quarter was ranked second place (that would be the so-called Silicon Roundabout), followed by Paris. Germany made a strong impression overall in the Centre’s tech analysis, with showings by Karlsruhe (4th place), Darmstadt (7th), Bonn (12th), Berlin (15th), Aachen (17th), Stuttgart (21st), Heidelberg (22nd), Frankfurt (30th) Erlangen (32nd) and Dresden (34th).

Most of Europe’s ICT activity takes place in 34 regions across 12 countries. Key ingredients to success included access to top universities and research centers and funding opportunities such as venture capital.

Based on a composite indicator that analyzes three ICT activities (business, R&D and Innovation) and values their intensity, their internationalization and the network role, three main poles of excellence are identified. Out of 100 points, Munich gets the maximum, London 97 and Paris 95. A further 31 regions show outstanding performance. These 34 top-ranked regions score between 41 and 100 points. Another 152 regions score between 20 and 40. The remaining 1,115 regions (86 percent of European regions) score below 20, with some 300 scoring 0. Dublin got 57 points.metro-rankingsmetro-rankings

This report addresses the EU strategy to reinforce Europe’s industrial and technology leadership in ICT. Its findings will be used in future EU policy formulation on encouraging innovation.

Click here to read the first part of this article, Business Facilities’ 11th Annual Rankings Report: Texas, Utah Top Flagship Business, Economic Categories.

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