Shanghai among top 10 most appealing cities in the world, Beijing is most competitive

This is the first time that a Chinese metropolis is among the top 10 in the Global Power City Index. Shanghai has benefitted from new ways of working during the pandemic. The Chinese capital is the most competitive metropolis thanks to online academic exchanges; based on pre-COVID measurement, it would be only 21st.


Hong Kong (AsiaNews) – Shanghai is the first Chinese metropolis to enter the global Top 10 most appealing cities in the world.

According to the Global Power City Index, released yesterday by the Institute for Urban Strategies at Japan’s Mori Memorial Foundation, the city has taken advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to "accelerate the development of new ways of working".

The big Chinese coastal city went from 30th place last year to 10th this year, improving its score in all categories considered in the study: economy, research and development, cultural interaction, liveability, environment and accessibility. The index, which began in 2008, uses 70 indicators.

The most attractive city is London, followed by New York. The best ranked Asian metropolis is Tokyo, in third place; Singapore is in a strong position in fifth position.

Shanghai can also boast third place in terms of competitiveness. Beijing ranked top because of the number of co-authored scientific research papers published, this according to the 2020-2021 Global Urban Competitiveness Report by the Chinese Academy of Social Sciences (CASS) and the United Nations Human Settlements Programme.

The study, in its sixth annual instalment, canvassed more than a thousand of the biggest urban centres on Earth to vet their industrial base and their connectedness within the global division of labour.

Since the COVID-19 pandemic reduced direct contacts between countries, the study relied on the number of co-authored scientific research papers published in a given city as a measure.

As many as 256 papers on COVID-19 research were published as of March 8 by Beijing-based institutes.

Based on pre-pandemic criteria, New York would be the world’s most competitive urban followed by Singapore and Tokyo. Using the same measurement, Beijing would have been 21st in global competitiveness.

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