July 28, 2015 11:30 AM
By Ed Skyler, Executive Vice President, Global Public Affairs, Citi
This post is adapted from Ed Skyler’s remarks at the New York Times 'Cities for Tomorrow' conference in New York on July 21, 2015.
Image credit: Larry Busacca/Getty Images for The New York Times
Citi has a unique interest in cities. Cities aren’t just in our name – they have been in our DNA since we opened our doors in Lower Manhattan over 200 years ago.
Massive population and economic shifts are impacting cities. 100 million people are moving to cities every year and nearly 70% of the world’s population is expected to be urban by 2050. The top 100 cities in the world will generate 35% of global economic growth over the next 10 years.
But when we talk about economic growth, we have to acknowledge that it won’t automatically be spread evenly across cities like peanut butter. It’s a competition and those cities that positon themselves for growth will emerge the strongest.
We looked at this in a study we conducted with The Economist. There are key factors that make a city competitive, such as the strength of its government institutions, infrastructure, financial maturity, human capital and cultural institutions.
Based on my experience in New York City government and now in the private sector, I think there are three key things cities should do to be more competitive.