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The Most Influential City in the World

In this article, we will reveal the most influential city in the world. If you wish to look at our detailed rankings, you can go to the 25 Most Influential Cities in the World.

Cities play a very important role in the world economy, serving as hubs for economic development, knowledge creation, and governance. According to Oxford Economics, the top 1,000 cities worldwide contributed to 60% of global GDP and housed over 30% of the global population as of 2023.

The significance of cities is going to increase even further in the coming years. In fact, before the COVID-19 pandemic, 70 cities had surpassed their countries in terms of GDP or employment growth over a ten-year period. It is also projected that urban populations will expand significantly, more than doubling by 2050. By then, nearly 70% of the world's population is expected to reside in urban areas.

However, the trend in urbanization differs among countries. The UN predicts that 93% of the upcoming increase in urban population is projected to take place in developing nations. The majority of this growth will be concentrated in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, contributing to 54%, 32.5%, and 6.8% of the overall urban population expansion, respectively.


Developing countries are not only expected to experience population growth but are also expected to play a more significant role in the global economy. In fact, a report by Forbes shows that BRICS currently accounts for more than 32% of the global GDP, which is slightly higher than the G7's 30%.

With the inclusion of new member countries, this bloc is projected to account for 36% of the world’s GDP, while also accommodating half of the global population. Hence, lists of the world’s leading cities increasingly feature entries from developing countries.

A strong business sector and the presence of notable companies also play an important role in increasing the influence of any city. For example, Xiaomi Corporation (HKSE:1810.HK), based in Beijing and traded on the Hong Kong Stock Exchange, is listed among the Time100 Most Influential Companies of 2024.

Xiaomi Corporation (HKSE:1810.HK) introduced its SU7 electric sedan in March, which was the first car produced by a telecommunications company. The Chinese tech giant, known for its wide range of products including computers, wearable devices, robot vacuums, scooters, and phones does not think of this venture as unconventional. Rather, Xiaomi Corporation (HKSE:1810.HK) considers the SU7 to be an enhancement of customers' electronic lifestyles. This innovative vehicle can connect to smart home devices, enabling drivers to manage household lighting and appliances from behind the wheel.

Initially targeting the Chinese market, Xiaomi Corporation (HKSE:1810.HK) set an affordable price point for the base model at around $30,000 to outdo the Model 3's pricing strategy. Surpassing expectations, the company received over 70,000 orders for the SU7 within less than one month of its release.

The Most Influential City in the World
The Most Influential City in the World

Our Methodology

To shortlist the 25 most influential cities in the world, we referred to various credible sources such as Forbes, the World Economic Forum, Oxford Economics, and Business Insider. For the purpose of ranking the cities, we looked at the Global Power City Index (GPCI) by Mori Memorial Foundation’s Institute of Urban Development. The index assesses the influence of cities worldwide through 6 metrics: economic strength, innovation capacity, cultural vibrancy, quality of life, environmental sustainability, and connectivity and accessibility. These metrics are designed to evaluate the cities’ power to attract funds, people, and enterprises. The most influential cities have been ranked in ascending order of their overall scores.

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The Most Influential City in the World

London, UK

Score: 1646.7

London, the capital and largest city of England and the United Kingdom, has a population of over 8.8 million. Known for its active tech scene with more than 3,000 startups, London is also a major global financial hub, handling $3.8  trillion in daily forex trading—over one-third of the world's total.

The city is also a center for medical and clinical research, hosting 4,500 top researchers and renowned trial centers. With over 42 higher education institutions, London has the highest concentration of such institutes in Europe, highlighting its academic excellence.

Beyond finance, London influences global trends in art, entertainment, fashion, and education. Its exceptional healthcare, media, and transportation systems further establish it as a leading global city.

Discover which city secured the second spot. You can visit the 25 Most Influential Cities in the World here.

At Insider Monkey, we delve into a variety of topics, ranging from the most influential cities in the world to business aspects; however, our expertise lies in identifying the top-performing stocks. Currently, Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology stands out as one of the most promising fields. If you are looking for an AI stock that is more promising than NVDA but that trades at less than 5 times its earnings, check out our report about the cheapest AI stock.

READ NEXT: Analyst Sees a New $25 Billion "Opportunity" for NVIDIA and Jim Cramer is Recommending These 10 Stocks in June.

Disclosure: None. This article is originally published on Insider Monkey.