Although New York did not feature in the top rankings of the previous competition in 2007, this year it has pipped Chicago to the top spot to become fDiMagazine’s North American City of the Future 2009/10.

This is primarily due to the high economic potential of New York attributed to the large number of FDI projects into and out of the city and the number of megaprojects associated with the city, according to fDi Markets’ database, as well as its large base of post-secondary students.

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Although Chicago has been pushed down to second place in the major city category, it still maintains the top position in terms of FDI promotion strategy and it scored highly in the categories of economic potential and infrastructure.

Mexico City is the highest ranking major Mexican city, in 12th position. Although it has performed well in terms of cost effectiveness, with the cheapest town office rental costs according to Regus, and in the human resources category, with the largest number of postsecondary students, the areas of quality of life and infrastructure have curbed its score.

fDiMagazine’s North American Cities of the Future 2009/10 shortlists, which took more than six months to research and involved the data collection of nearly 400 North American cities, ranks San Francisco, California, as the top large city of the future, followed closely by Austin, Texas. Of the large cities surveyed, San Luis Potosí in Mexico ranks top for cost effectiveness, while Charlotte, North Carolina, ranks top for FDI strategy according to the judging panel.

The small cities category comprised of the most cities surveyed this year, with Tampa, Florida, coming out in top position followed by Minneapolis, Minnesota. The Canadian city of Halifax has received the highest small city score for FDI strategy, while Raleigh in North Carolina ranks at number one position in terms of economic potential.

Richmond, Virginia, ranks ninth overall in the small cities category, primarily due to a high scoring in terms of its FDI promotion strategy.

The top micro North American City of the Future 2009/10 is Greenville, South Carolina, due to its strong economic potential, good human resources and high scores in business friendliness. The top Canadian city in the small city category is Victoria, British Columbia, ranking third overall, helped by high scores in both infrastructure and FDI promotion strategy.

Methodology

fDiCities of the Future shortlists are created by the independent collection of data by fDi Benchmark, across nearly 400 North American cities. This information was set under six categories: economic potential, human resources, cost effectiveness, quality of life, infrastructure and business friendliness. A seventh category was added to the scoring – FDI promotion strategy. In this category, 128 North American cities submitted details about their promotion strategy and this was judged and scored by the independent judging panel as well as fDi’s research team.

This year, cities were categorised by their city population only – not the metro area – in order to make the data collected more comparative across city levels. The categories were as follows:

  • Major cities have a population of more than 1,000,000.
  • Large cities have a population greater than 500,000 and smaller than 1,000,000.
  • Small cities have a population greater than 100,000 and smaller than 500,000.
  • Micro cities have a population of less than 100,000.
  • Cities could score up to a maximum of 10 points for each individual criteria, which were weighted by importance to give the overall scores.

Notes

In April 2008, the Financial Times Ltd acquired fDiMarkets and fDiBenchmark. fDiMarkets is an independent database which tracks global FDI on a realtime basis whereas fDiBenchmark is an independent database which benchmarks global locations on how appealing they are to foreign investors. This division compiled the majority of the data for the Cities of the Future competition, with the exception of the FDI promotion strategy which was submitted by individual cities and assessed by the judging panel. These changes have made the competition even more objective.

THE JUDGING PANEL

Carlos Angulo-Parra

Partner, Baker & McKenzie AbogadosDon Holbrook

Board member, International Economic Development CouncilDaniel Malachuk

View from America columnist, fDi; and an adviser on global direct investment strategiesMiguel Noyola

Partner, Baker & McKenzie LLPMark O’Connell

Chief executive officer, OCO Global

 

NORTH AMERICAN CITIES OF THE FUTURE 2009/10

RANK

CITY

STATE

COUNTRY

1

New York New York

US

2

Chicago Illinois

US

3

Houston

Texas

US

4

 San Francisco

California

US

5

Austin

Texas

US

6

Tampa

Florida

US

7

Los Angeles

California

US

8

Miami

Florida

US

9

Charlotte

North Carolina

US

10

San Jose

California

US

Click on the link below for a PDF version of the complete results:

 

Download more American Cities of the Future results here:

American Cities of the Future 2011/12