September 1, 2014

London named as the world’s most influential city

The UK capital topped the annual list, drawn up by Forbes magazine, coming ahead of New York, Paris and Singapore.

The thriving financial district, being Europe’s top technology startup centre and the number of multinational companies with headquarters in the city, helped tip the balance in London’s favour.

Joel Kotkin, a professor of urban development, and one of the panel responsible for ranking the 58 metropolitan areas, said the historic city was the birthplace of many of the practices that define global capitalism. "After more than a century of imperial decline, [London] still ranks at number one in our survey," he wrote.

"The United Kingdom may now be a second-rate power, but the City’s unparalleled legacy as a global financial capital still underpins its pre-eminence." While it used to be the case that the most influential cities in the world were the largest or fastest growing, Mr Kotkin said this was no longer the case.

The list also demonstrated the growing status of Asian cities such as Hong Kong, Tokyo, Shanghai and Beijing. Dubai was the only city in the developing world that featured in the top 20, with poor infrastructure and concerns about corruption continuing to dog Delhi, Johannesburg and Sao Paulo.

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