Stats: Paris Still the Highest-Rated City in the World

The Seine River flowing by the Eiffel Tower in Paris
Photo by IakovKalinin/iStock/Getty Images Plus/Getty Images

Paris remains the highest-rated city in the world, according to a new brand power study by the Anholt-Gfk City Brands Index (CBI). For the fourth time since the survey began, the global public regards Paris as the highest rated out of 50 cities. The biennial study was conducted in September and October of 2017.

The study evaluates the power and appeal of each city’s image based on six key dimensions:

  1. Presence (the city's international status and standing)
  2. Place (its physical outdoors aspect and transport)
  3. Prerequisites (basic requirements, such as affordable accommodations and the standard of public amenities)
  4. People (friendliness, cultural diversity, how safe one feels)
  5. Pulse (interesting things to do)
  6. Potential (the economic and educational opportunities available)

Here’s how the top 10 cities stack up in the latest report:

2017 Rank City 2015 Rank
1 Paris 1
2 London 2
3 Sydney 4
4 New York 3
5 Los Angeles 5
6 Rome 6
7 Melbourne 9
8 Amsterdam 8
9 San Francisco 9
10 Berlin 10

Australia showed particular improvement in the latest report. Sydney overtook New York (#4) to earn a spot in the top three, while Melbourne jumped to seventh place, passing Amsterdam (#8) and Berlin (#10).

CBI also demonstrates the precariousness of cities resting on their nation's brand. A number of cities underperform their nation's standing as established in this year's Nation Brands Index. Berlin is a prime example, just managing to hold onto a spot within the top-tier of cities.

"This might be surprising given that Germany as a country took first place in the 2017 Nation Brands Index rankings and boasted the most balanced image of all nations surveyed," Vadim Volos, senior vice president of Social and Strategic Research and head of CBI at GfK, said in a written statement. "This shows that cities cannot rest on their nation's brand, they must cultivate their own unique images as well."

Western cities tend to dominate the top half of cities, and in previous years, Western cities benefitted noticeably more than Eastern cities in the global public's estimations. 2017 shows a change in fortunes with marked improvement for many that is not constrained by region or developmental stage. For example, Tokyo is one of only a handful of non-Western cities that resides within the top half of cities. After experiencing a score decline in 2013, Tokyo has rebuilt and grown its image in the two consecutive CBI studies. Tokyo enjoys the greatest score gain of any city (+1.79) in 2017's CBISM to draw to a tie for 11th position with Vancouver, surpassing Madrid, Barcelona, Washington D.C., Toronto, and Vienna.

Looking at CBI's Middle Eastern and African regions, Dubai is the only city within this region measured that does not rest within the bottom tier of cities. Dubai falls narrowly outside the top half (27th), with its Presence (15th) and Place (16th) rankings anchoring and propelling its image. Though Dubai is the city within the region with the best reputation, Durban wins the award for most improved (+1.51), which allows it to surpass Cairo.

For more information on CBISM 2017, contact Vadim Volos at [email protected] .

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