Thursday, April 30, 2009



IWS Documented News Service
Institute for Workplace Studies----------------- Professor Samuel B. Bacharach
School of Industrial & Labor Relations
-------- Director, Institute for Workplace Studies
Cornell University
16 East 34th Street, 4th floor
---------------------- Stuart Basefsky
New York, NY 10016
-------------------------------Director, IWS News Bureau


Quality of Living global city rankings 2009 ­ Mercer survey [29 April 22009]

TABLES included after scrolling all the way down at URL above --

Top 50 cities: Quality of living
Base City: New York, US (=100)

Top 50 rankings - City infrastructure
* City Infrastructure Ranking 2009 includes the following criteria: electricity, water availability, telephone, mail, public transport, traffic congestion and airport.

Dublin , 29 April 2009

   * Dublin ranks 25th of 215 in Mercer's 2009 Quality of Living Global City rankings
   * Vienna scores highest for overall quality of living, Baghdad the lowest
   * Dublin ranks ahead of several major cities including Paris (33rd ), London (38th), and Barcelona (joint 42nd with Portland, USA) in the Quality of Living survey
   * This year's rankings also identify cities with the best infrastructure
   * Singapore ranks top for city infrastructure; Dublin ranks 58th of 215 cities
   * Cities ranked ahead of Dublin in the City Infrastructure rankings include London (joint 8th with Frankfurt and Hong Kong), Paris (13th), Birmingham / Glasgow (ranked joint 45th)

Dublin ranks 25th of 215 (in top 12%) in the Mercer 2009 Quality of Living Global City rankings, ahead of several major cities including Paris (33rd), London (38th), and Barcelona (42nd).  Vienna has passed Zurich to take the top spot as the world's city with the best quality of living, according to the Mercer 2009 Quality of Living survey. Geneva is in third position, while Vancouver and Auckland are now joint fourth in the rankings.

Patrick Robertson a Principal at Mercer commented: "As a result of the current financial crisis, multinationals are looking to review their international assignment policies with a view to cutting costs."  "Many companies plan to reduce the number of medium to long-term international assignments and localise their expatriate compensation packages where possible though an allowance, based on quality of living criteria," he added.

This year's ranking also identifies the cities with the best infrastructure based on electricity supply, water availability, telephone and mail services, public transport provision, traffic congestion and the range of international flights from local airports. Singapore is at the top of this index (score 109.1) followed by Munich in second place and Copenhagen in third.  Dublin is ranked 58th out of the 215 cities rated.  Cities ranked ahead of Dublin in the City infrastructure rankings include London (8th), Paris (13th), Birmingham / Glasgow (ranked joint 45th).


Europe's cities once more dominate the world's top 10 for quality of living. Vienna is the city rated with the best quality of living worldwide, moving up one place in the rankings following improvements in Austria's political and social environment. The rest of the top 10 for Europe are dominated by German and Swiss cities, most of them retaining last year's ranking and scores. Zurich, in second place, is followed by Geneva (3), Dusseldorf (6), Munich (7), Frankfurt (8) and Bern (9).

Many Eastern European cities have seen an increase in quality of living. A number of countries which joined the European Union back in 2004 have experienced consistent improvement with increased stability, rising living standards and greater availability of international consumer goods. Ljubljana in Slovenia, for example, moves up four places to reach 78 while Bratislava moves up three places to 88. Zagreb moves three places to 103.


There have been few changes in the rankings for North American cities. Canadian cities still dominate the top of the index for this region. Vancouver (4) retains the top spot and Honolulu (29) ranks as the city in the United States with the highest quality of living. Washington and New York remain in positions 44 and 49 respectively.

In Central and South America, San Juan in Puerto Rico retains the highest ranking at 72, followed by Montevideo, Uruguay at 79. Port au Prince (206) in Haiti continues to rank lowest in the region and has gone down four places in the overall ranking due to food shortages experienced in 2008 and the subsequent riots.

Middle East and Africa

Dubai (77) in the United Arab Emirates and Port Louis in Mauritius (82) are the region's cities with the best quality of living. Dubai's transport facilities have witnessed improvements, with the development of its road infrastructure and expansion of its international airport and the city is up six places in the ranking.

Cape Town in South Africa, previously the city in the region with the best quality of living, has dropped substantially in this year's ratings (from 80 to 87 in 2009). This move follows violent riots in South Africa's main cities in 2008.

Asia Pacific

Auckland (4) in New Zealand retains its position as the highest ranking city for quality of living in the region. Sydney in Australia follows at 10 and Wellington in New Zealand at 12. While the majority of the region's cities retain a similar ranking to last year, Singapore (26) is the region's highest riser, up six places since 2008. The city has gained importance as a financial centre and offers a wide range of international and private schools to cater to its expatriate community. Beijing has also moved three places in the ranking, up from 116 to 113, mainly due to improvements in public transport facilities from the Olympic Games last August.

The Quality of Living Global City rankings are based on a point-scoring index, which sees Vienna score 108.6, and Baghdad 14.4. Cities are ranked against New York as the base city with an index score of 100. Mercer's Quality of Living ranking covers 215 cities and is conducted to help governments and major companies place employees on international assignments.

This information is provided to subscribers, friends, faculty, students and alumni of the School of Industrial & Labor Relations (ILR). It is a service of the Institute for Workplace Studies (IWS) in New York City. Stuart Basefsky is responsible for the selection of the contents which is intended to keep researchers, companies, workers, and governments aware of the latest information related to ILR disciplines as it becomes available for the purposes of research, understanding and debate. The content does not reflect the opinions or positions of Cornell University, the School of Industrial & Labor Relations, or that of Mr. Basefsky and should not be construed as such. The service is unique in that it provides the original source documentation, via links, behind the news and research of the day. Use of the information provided is unrestricted. However, it is requested that users acknowledge that the information was found via the IWS Documented News Service.

Stuart Basefsky                   
Director, IWS News Bureau                
Institute for Workplace Studies 
Cornell/ILR School                        
16 E. 34th Street, 4th Floor             
New York, NY 10016                        
Telephone: (607) 255-2703                
Fax: (607) 255-9641                       

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