Leading think tank ranked Katowice among 300 fastest growing metro areas

Katowice was ranked among 300 fastest growing metro economies worldwide. These findings come from a new report by the Brookings Institution’s Metropolitan Policy Program, released as a part of the Global Cities Initiative, a joint project of Brookings and JPMorgan Chase.

© Brooking Institution; 300 largest metropolitan economies 2013-2014, appendix of the Global MetroMonitor 2014
© Brookings Institution; 300 largest metropolitan economies 2013-2014, appendix of the Global MetroMonitor 2014

This year’s Global MetroMonitor, the fourth edition of the report, analyzes 2013-2014 data on the performance of the world’s 300 largest metropolitan areas based on their annualized growth rates of GDP per capita and employment. The Monitor combines these two key economic indicators into an economic performance index on which the 300 metro areas are ranked for 2014. The 300 largest metropolitan economies are home to 20 percent of the world’s population and jobs, but account for almost half of global GDP.

In case of Katowice, the analysis found that overall, the change year-on-year of GDP per capita amounted to +3,5% in the City and the employment change was +1,1%. However, it has to be mentioned that the analysts classified Katowice together with Ostrava (the Czech Republic) into one metro area. The performance indicators of these two metropolitan areas were summed up and presented together as Katowice-Ostrava. This way, the two-city metro has the population of over 5,1 million people.

Joseph Parilla, Brookings research analyst and lead author, explained us why the two cities were matched together. „For all the European metro areas in our study, we used the European Observation Network for Territorial Development and Cohesion (ESPON) definitions of metro areas. We felt this gave the most accurate representation of metro areas as we define them in the United States because the current ESPON 2013 database employs commuting data at the municipal level to define functional urban areas, the building blocks of metropolitan areas. In some cases, these formal definitions may not translate as well to local initiatives and viewpoints. We come across this in the United States too. That said, it was the best way we could standardize our analysis across many different places” – he said.

Katowice-Ostrava is not the only two-city metro area ranked in the report. For example, European’s Vienna-Bratislava, Koln-Dusseldorf, Copenhagen-Malmo and Venice-Padova were also paired.

The MetroMonitor also analyzes the extent to which the world’s metro economies have recovered to 2007 levels of income and employment. Along these lines, it classifies metro economies into three performance categories: recovered, partially recovered and not recovered. Katowice achieved full recovery to 2007 levels in both employment and income.

The most important economic driver of the Katowice metro area was manufacturing in the 2013 to 2014 period (24,7% of all categorized industries). The second important industry was trade and tourism (16,5%) the third one was business and finance (16,1%).

Only three Polish cities were ranked in the report. Apart from Katowice (119th), there are Kraków (108th) and Warsaw (132nd). Macau in China was the world’s top-performing metro area in 2014, followed by the Turkish cities of Izmir, Istanbul and Bursa.

The Brookings Institution is a nonprofit public policy organization based in Washington, the U.S. For nearly 100 years, the institution has conducted high-quality, independent research and, based on that research, provided innovative, practical recommendations. Brookings is ranked as the most influential, most quoted and most trusted think tank.