Urban utopia: where are the world’s most liveable cities?

On the release of a report into the world’s most liveable cities, we take a look at the shifts cities have experienced in the wake of the pandemic and how this might affect the future of work

It is widely acceptable that the world’s most liveable cities are among those most likely to attract jobs and investment. So which cities are thriving again after the lockdown? Who has recovered the quickest and why?

The latest Liveability Index from The Economist Intelligence Unit ranks conditions for 173 cities across five categories: stability, healthcare, culture and environment, education and infrastructure. Its results show that life in cities is currently better than it’s ever been in the past 15 years, with only stability scores seeing a small decline from previous years.

Vienna has retained its position as the world’s most liveable city, with Copenhagen following close behind. Both cities rank highly for all categories, offering a quality of life that can’t be found elsewhere. The Australian cities of Sydney and Melbourne have risen up the ranks in 2023, replacing European cities like Amsterdam in the top 10. This trend is seen throughout the ranking, with European cities dropping down and cities from Asia-Pacific region on the rise.

European slump

Why are European cities performing poorly? Well, the war in Ukraine has destabilised many neighbouring regions and civil unrest in countries such as Greece and France have dented their rankings. Cities in the UK have also dropped down the rankings after failing to make the gains that other cities have been achieving. London is down 12 places from 2022 and ranks 46th in the world for liveability. New York fares no better, down ten spots to 69th.

Cities with low liveability scores may not be the most attractive option for workers in the future. As other places pour investment into making their urban environments more vibrant, healthy and interesting places to live, they will become more attractive to employees.

Future of the city?

What can cities do to continue to draw employees back? Take a look at WORKTECH Academy’s latest Trend Report for Q2 2023, ‘Where next for Urban Space? Six Transitions Facing Work and the City’. This explores the connections and reimagines how both spaces can attract and retain people.

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