When it comes to putting their heads together to attract foreign investors, Atlanta’s economic development community does it better than any other U.S. city, according to a new report by fDi Intelligence.
The “Global Cities of the Future 2014/15” report ranked Atlanta No. 13 globally in the “FDI Strategy” category, but all the other cities eclipsing it were outside the U.S. Miami, notably, was down at No. 24, and no other cities from the region cracked the top 25. Dubai came out as the world leader in FDI recruitment.
The report does make it clear that FDI strategy is the only subjective ranking in the study. Additionally, only 44 out of the 130 cities measured submitted the surveys required for consideration in the FDI category, reducing the competition.
But even without this contribution, Atlanta had a strong showing overall. It was cited as the No. 18 global city overall, only surpassed in North America by New York (No. 6) and San Francisco (No. 14). Again, competitors from the Southeast U.S., the region of which Atlanta claims to be the business capital, were nowhere to be found.
“Our initiatives for growing and attracting companies, developing world-class talent, growing our global connectivity and fostering a business-friendly climate all contribute to strengthening metro Atlanta’s robust innovation economy,” Hala Moddelmog, president and CEO of the Metro Atlanta Chamber, is cited as saying in the report.
Things look even better the more the lens is focused. Among the 62 “major” cities with metro areas of more than 4 million people, Atlanta was No. 7 overall, scoring significant points by coming in fifth in the “human capital and lifestyle” category, which heavily weights the presence of universities. Atlanta, as the Metro Atlanta Chamber points out, has 66 universities with 275,000 students. The lifestyle category also includes such metrics as life expectancy, brain drain and number of physicians per 1,000 people.
Singapore was the world’s No. 1 global city of the future, according to the report, which put London and Hong Kong at second and third places, respectively.
Seoul was the top city in the “emerging cities” category, those with per capita GDP of less than $35,000, followed in the top five by Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; Santiago, Chile; Panama City and Wuhan, China.
London was tops among megacities, those with more than 10 million inhabitants, followed by New York, Tokyo, Shanghai and Beijing.
Read more and download the full report here.