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Economic activity in European cities - Global Metro Monitor 2011

The Brookings Institute in the United States has analysed the capita GDP (income) and employment changes in the 2010 to 2011 period for 200 of the world’s largest metropolitan economies. Read some of the most important findings for European cities in quotes taken from the report:

European cities: shift in growth towards global East and South (see p.2)

The 2010 Global Metro Monitor shows that recession and recovery came in waves across metropolitan areas around the world. In many large metropolitan areas in developing countries, economic growth slowed, but neither employment nor income declined. In total, 90 percent of the fastest-growing metropolitan economies among the 200 largest worldwide were located outside North America and Western Europe. By contrast, 95 percent of the slowest-growing metro economies were in the United States, Western Europe, and earthquake-damaged Japan.

Bottom performers among European cities (see p.10)

“The bottom performer, not surprisingly, was Athens, ground zero in the continuing European fiscal and financial crisis during 2011. Lisbon, Dublin, Seville, Madrid, Naples, Barcelona, and Valencia joined Athens among the 10 lowest-ranked metro economies, reflecting in part the European fiscal and monetary crises that inhibited growth in their respective nations. Still, performance differed among metro areas even within these countries. In Italy, for example, Venice-Padova posted modest growth in income and employment thanks to a strengthening business and financial services sector, ranking it 130th overall, even as Naples shed jobs and stagnated on income, ranking it 194th overall.


Eastern European cities grow fast (see p.1)

“Income and employment grew much faster in 2011 than the year before in Eastern European metro areas such as Bucharest, Prague, and Warsaw. According to Brookings Institute income levels in Eastern European cities are almost twice those of their countries. In developed economies with high levels of urbanization, metro incomes are closer to national averages. 

Strong sectors in European cities (see p.1)

“Metro areas specializing in commodities and business and financial services within their countries exhibited the strongest performance. By contrast, metro areas with high concentrations of local/non-market services (education, health care, administrative services, government) or construction registered only sluggish growth last year. Manufacturing accounted for the largest share of output growth in 59 metro areas from 2010 to 2011, including many in which it does not rank as the largest industry. A slowdown in the recovery did not alter the continued ascendance of emerging-market metro areas as hubs for production, consumption, and trade. The relatively stronger recent growth of business and financial services and manufacturing capitals suggests that metropolitan areas most focused in high value export industries may be better positioned to respond to the opportunities offered by worldwide recovery and future global urban growth.


Donwload the full report from Brookings Institute