Global city

A global city or world city is a concept which postulates that globalisation can be broken down in terms of strategic geographic locales that see global processes being created, facilitated and enacted. The most complex of these entities is the "global city", whereby the linkages binding a city have a direct and tangible effect on global affairs through more than just socio-economic means, with influence in terms of culture, or politics. [1] The terminology of "global city", as opposed to megacity, is thought to have been first coined by Saskia Sassen in reference to London, New York and Tokyo in her 1991 work The Global City. [2]



General characteristics

It has been argued that global cities are those sharing the following characteristics:[citation needed]

To some, London, New York City, Paris, and Tokyo have been traditionally considered the 'big four' world cities – not coincidentally, they also serve as symbols of global capitalism. [citation needed] However, many people have their own personal lists, and any two lists are likely to differ based on cultural background, values, and experience.

In certain countries, the rise of suburbia and the ongoing migration of manufacturing jobs to these countries has led to significant urban decay. Therefore, to boost urban regeneration, tourism, and revenue, the goal of building a "world-class" city has recently become an obsession with the governments of some mid-size cities and their constituents.

The phenomenon of world-city building has also been observed in Buenos Aires, Santiago, Frankfurt, Montréal, Sydney, Mexico City and Toronto: each of these cities has emerged as large and influential. [citation needed]


GaWC Inventory of World Cities (1999 Edition)

An attempt to define and categorise world cities was made in 1999 by the Globalization and World Cities Study Group and Network (GaWC), based primarily at Loughborough University in Loughborough, Leicestershire, England. The roster was outlined in the GaWC Research Bulletin 5[4] and ranked cities based on provision of "advanced producer services" such as accountancy, advertising, finance and law, by international corporations. The GaWC inventory identifies three levels of world cities and several sub-ranks.

Note that this roster generally denotes cities in which there are offices of certain multinational companies providing financial and consulting services rather than other cultural, political, and economic centres. There is a schematic map of GaWC cities at their website.[5]


Alpha world cities (full service world cities)

12 points:

10 points:

Refer to Official GaWC List.[6]


Beta world cities (major world cities)

9 points:

8 points:

7 points:


Gamma world cities (minor world cities)

6 points

5 points:

4 points:


Evidence of world city formation


Strong evidence

3 points

  • India Mumbai
  • India New Delhi
  • United States Philadelphia

Some evidence

2 points:


Minimal evidence

1 point:


GaWC Leading World Cities (2004 Edition)

An attempt to redefine and recategorise leading world cities was made by PJ Taylor at GaWC in 2004.
This ranking list is referred to as the Official GaWC List.[7]


Global Cities


Well rounded global cities

  1. Very large contribution: United Kingdom London and United States New York City.
    Smaller contribution and with cultural bias: United States Los Angeles, France Paris and United States San Francisco.
  2. Incipient global cities: Netherlands Amsterdam, United States Boston, United States Chicago, Spain Madrid, Italy Milan, Russia Moscow, Canada Toronto.

Global niche cities - specialised global contributions

  1. Economic: Hong Kong Hong Kong, Singapore Singapore, and Japan Tokyo.
  2. Political and social: Belgium Brussels, Switzerland Geneva, France Strasbourg and United States Washington.

World Cities


Subnet articulator cities

  1. Cultural: Germany Berlin, Denmark Copenhagen, Australia Melbourne, Germany Munich, Norway Oslo, Italy Rome, Sweden Stockholm.
    Political: Thailand Bangkok, People's Republic of China Beijing, Austria Vienna.
  2. Social: Philippines Manila, Kenya Nairobi, Canada Ottawa.

Worldwide leading cities

  1. Primarily economic global contributions: Germany Frankfurt, United States Miami, Germany Munich, Japan Osaka, Singapore Singapore, Australia Sydney, Switzerland Zürich
  2. Primarily non-economic global contributions: Côte d'Ivoire Abidjan, Ethiopia Addis Ababa, United States Atlanta, Switzerland Basle, Spain Barcelona, Egypt Cairo, United States Denver, Zimbabwe Harare, France Lyon, Philippines Manila, Mexico Mexico City, India Mumbai, India New Delhi, People's Republic of China Shanghai.

Global Cities Conference 2006

 This article or section needs to be updated.
Parts of this article or section have been identified as no longer being up to date.

Please update the article to reflect recent events, and remove this template when finished.

This conference[8] took place at Liverpool Hope University, starting on 29 June 2006 and chaired by Dr. Lawrence Phillips of the Global Cities Conference at the university. Its aim was to establish what is meant by a 'global city', by examining criteria such as images, narratives, economics, planning and people's experiences. It also looked at whether the perceived 'big four' — London, Paris, New York, and Tokyo — are in fact the only candidates for global city status, or if they should in fact be joined by fast-growing cities in Asia or the developing world.


Other criteria

The GaWC list is based on specific criteria and, thus, may not include other cities of global significance or elsewhere on the spectrum. For example, cities with the following:

  • Large populations, proper and agglomerated
  • Diverse demographic constituencies[9]
  • Based on various indicators[10]:
    • Population, habitat,[11] mobility,[12] and urbanisation[13]
  • Significant financial capacity/output:
    • city/regional[14] GDP[15]
    • Stock market indices[16]/market capitalisation
    • Headquarters for multinational corporations
    • Financial service provision[17]; e.g., banks, accountancy
    • Employment
  • Based on quality of life[18] or city development[19]
  • Based on costs of living[20]
    • Based on personal wealth; e.g., number of billionaires[21]
  • Significant transport infrastructure:
    • Airports with significant passenger traffic[22] or cargo movements
    • Extensive and popular[23] mass transit systems
    • Prominent rail usage[24]
    • Road vehicle usage[25]
    • Major seaports[26]
  • Significant technological capabilities/infrastructure:
    • Prominent skylines/skyscrapers[27]
  • Significant institutions:
    • Educational institutions; e.g., universities,[28] international student attendance[29]
    • Research facilities
    • Health facilities; e.g. hospitals, medical laboratories
  • Sites of pilgrimage for world religions
  • Hosting headquarters for international organizations
  • Cities containing UNESCO World Heritage Sites of historical and cultural significance[30]
  • High endowments of cultural facilities:
    • Notable museums and galleries
    • Notable opera
    • Notable orchestras
    • Notable film centres and film festivals
    • Notable theatre centres
    • Sites of major international sports events; e.g., Olympic Games sites[31]
  • Tourism throughput:
    • Visitors
    • Economy
    • Events
  • Site or subject in Arts and Media
    • TV,Film,Video-Games,Music
    • Literature,Magazines,Articles,Documentary
    • Historic Reference,Showcase

Table of the cities of the world

For selected criteria

Rank Population of city (proper) Population of metropolitan area Percentage foreign born [9] Cost of living [20] Metro systems by annual passenger ridership Annual passenger air traffic (2002) [32] Number of billionaires (US Dollars) [33][34][35]
1 Mumbai Tokyo Miami Moscow Tokyo London New York City
2 Karachi Mumbai Toronto Seoul Moscow Tokyo Los Angeles
3 Delhi Mexico City Los Angeles Tokyo Seoul Chicago Moscow
4 São Paulo New York City Vancouver Hong Kong Mexico City New York City London
5 Shanghai São Paulo New York City London New York City Atlanta Hong Kong
6 Moscow Seoul Singapore Osaka Paris Paris Chicago
7 Seoul Delhi Sydney Geneva London Los Angeles San Francisco
8 İstanbul Shanghai Abidjan Copenhagen Osaka Dallas Fort-Worth Paris
9 Mexico City Jakarta London Zürich Hong Kong Frankfurt Dallas
10 Tokyo Moscow Paris Oslo/New York City Singapore Houston Tokyo

See also



  1. Sassen, Saskia - The global city: strategic site/new frontier
  2. Sassen, Saskia - The Global City: New York, London, Tokyo. (1991) - Princeton University Press. ISBN 0-691-07063-6
  4. GaWC Research Bulletin 5, GaWC, Loughborough University, 28 July 1999
  5. The World According to GaWC, GaWC, Loughborough University
  6. Inventory of World Cities, GaWC, Loughborough University
  7. Leading World Cities, GaWC, Loughborough University
  8. 2006 Global Cities Conference
  9. 9.0 9.1 Chapter 5: Globalization and cultural choice, "2004 Human Development Report" (page 99), UNDP, 2004 PDF
  10. Chapter 9: Urban Data, "World Resources 1998-99", WRI, 1998 PDF
  11. City Profiles, UN
  12. Mobility 2001, WBCSD PDF
  14. Urban Characteristics,City Level, 1993, "World Resources 1998-99", WRI, 1998 PDF
  15. Global Urban Indicators Database 2 (1998 data) (data sets in .ZIP), UN-HABITAT
  16. World Indices, Bloomberg
  17. J.V. Beaverstock, World City Networks 'From Below', GaWC, Loughborough University, 29 September 2005
  18. World-wide quality of living survey, Mercer, 10 April 2006
  19. The city development index, "THE STATE OF THE WORLD'S CITIES REPORT 2001", UN-HABITAT, 21 June 2006 PDF
  20. 20.0 20.1 2006 worldwide cost of living survey results released, Mercer, 26 June 2006
  21. The World's Billionaires, Forbes, 2005
  22. Mapping the Global Network Economy on the Basis of Air Passenger Transport Flows, GaWC, Loughborough University, 8 December 2004
  23. Estimated Ridership of the World’s Largest Public Transit Systems, 1998
  25. Traffic Intensity by International Urban Area: 1990
  26. Largest seaports of the world
  27. The World's Best Skylines
  28. [1] (registration required) PDF
  29. K. O'Connor, International Students and Global Cities, GaWC, Loughborough University, 17 February 2005
  30. World Heritage List, UNESCO
  31. P. De Groote, Economic and Tourism Aspects of the Olympic Games, GaWC, Loughborough University, 21 September 2005
  33. INTERNATIONAL PRIVATE WEALTH MANAGEMENT, International Financial Services, December 2004 PDF
  34. Forbes reports billionaire boom, BBC, 10 March 2006
  35. 500 richest in Russia, Finance Magazine, published by RBC. February 2006.

External links

Retrieved from "http://localhost../../art/0/g.html"

This text comes from Wikipedia the free encyclopedia. Permission is granted to copy, distribute and/or modify this document under the terms of the GNU Free Documentation License, Version 1.2 or any later version published by the Free Software Foundation; with no Invariant Sections, no Front-Cover Texts, and no Back-Cover Texts. For a complete list of contributors for a given article, visit the corresponding entry on the English Wikipedia and click on "History" . For more details about the license of an image, visit the corresponding entry on the English Wikipedia and click on the picture.