What makes a great super city?

New York has beaten London to the top spot in a new global report that celebrates the cities that are most supportive of innovation, entrepreneurship and start ups.

25.06.15 | -1

By Stephen Ardern


This was the question posed in a new report by CITIE, published in a website built by Uniform. 

CITIE, City Initiatives for Technology, Innovation and Entrepreneurship, is a collaboration between Nesta, Accenture and Future Cities Catapult. It's a guidebook that helps policymakers in cities create the best possible environment for innovation and entrepreneurship.

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With half of the world’s population now living in urban areas, there is an increasing acceptance that ‘super cities’ need to plan for the future, to meet further population growth.

In essence, the study is quite simple to understand. CITIE evaluates 40 global cities using a framework of nine roles a city can play to support innovation. Cities are then assessed to see how well they played these roles by measuring the extent to which they have implemented 36 different policy levers, which collectively amount to best practice.

At a time when cities are debating the best use of resources this is a truly innovative programme.

The report exemplifies a number of cities for success, including New York’s Digital.NYC - an online hub for NYC’s start-up ecosystem. Driven by the Mayor’s Office and the NYC Economic Development Corporation, it connects more than 6,000 start-ups to over 150 companies and investors, runs events and classes as well as links local talent to hiring SMEs.

New York beat fierce competition from London to win overall first place, performing strongly across almost all the CITIE policy roles. One of its key differentiators is the strength and long standing of leadership.

"True to its reputation as an open and global city, London was the highest overall performer across the Openness roles. It has a sophisticated approach to using methodologies such as Challenge Prizes (funding for start ups) to act as a customer of new ideas. " - CITIE report 2015.


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The timing of this project is exceptional from our perspective, as we are currently exploring how connected devices and technology can impact on placemaking and influence cities of the future.

The launch of CITIE featured across the international press, including the Wall Street JournalWired and Business Insider.


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