Mercer’s 2009 Global City Rankings Results

Mercer’s 2009 Global City Rankings Results

0 3225


The latest global rankings survey by Mercer shows that the best places to live worldwide according to their survey are Switzerland, Germany, Canada and Austria. Being featured several times in the “top 20 cities to live in” each of these countries is present not once, but several times.

Based on a point-scoring index, the top locations are dominated by European cities.
Within the UK, London clocked in at 38, and Birmingham and Glasgow ranked jointly at number 56.

In the US, the highest ranking entry went to Honolulu who ended up position 29. The top ranking city in Asia is Singapore at 26, followed by Tokyo at 35. At the very bottom of the index is Baghdad, ranking 215.

To give you an idea on the overall score, Vienna at the top scored 108.6 points and Baghdad at the bottom scored a measly 14.4 points. Here is a short overview of each region and how they performed since the last index.


Europe’s cities are still dominating the world for the quality of life they offer to residents. Being featured as the tops spot worldwide, Vienna moved up one place from last year overtaking Zurich. This improvement has been mainly attributed to the general improvements of Austria’s political and social environment.

The other Europe top ten rankings are dominated by German and Swiss cities. Most of these have actually retained their rankings from the previous year. Zurich, ranking in second place, is followed by Geneva in 3rd, Dusseldorf in 6th, Munich at position 7, Frankfurt in 8th and Bern at number 9.

A major increase of lifestyle quality has also been registered in Eastern Europe. Slovenia’s
Ljubljana has moved up four places to reach position 78, while Bratislava moved up three places to 88. Zagreb moves three places to 103.

London’s good ranking in the infrastructure index is reflected by the relative high level of public services on offer.


North American cities have experienced a few changes in the rankings. Still dominating the top ranking for the region are Canadian cities with Vancouver at number 4 and Honolulu in position 29. Washington and New York remain in positions 44 and 49 respectively.

In the Central and South American cities, San Juan in Puerto Rico ranks highest at 72, followed by Montevideo at 79. Port au Prince in Haiti ranks lowest in the region at 206.

Asia Pacific

Auckland is still the highest ranking city in Asia at number 4. Following at position 10 is Sydney and Wellington in New Zealand at 12. Most of the region’s cities have retained similar rankings to the previous year but notably Singapore has been the region’s highest riser gaining six places since last year at 26.

Beijing has also moved three places in the ranking, up from 116 to 113. This has been attributed to improvements in public transport facilities from the Olympic Games last August.

A decline in stability and security has seen Bangkok fall from 109 in 2008 to 120in 2009 and Mumbai from 142 to 148.

The regions lowest ranking is in Bangladesh’s city Dhaka at 205.

Middle East and Africa

The best quality of life can be enjoyed in Dubai at 77 and Port Louis in Mauritius at 82.

Dubai’s transport facilities have improved and so has the city’s road infrastructure and expansion of the international airport.

Cape Town in South Africa, which used to be the regions best ranking city has lost 7 spaces and dropped from 80 to 87 in 2009. This loss is mainly due to the violent riots in South Africa’s main cities in 2008.

At the bottom of the region is Baghdad at 215.

Source: Mercer