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New Report Names Edinburgh as a Global Urban Hotspot for the Future

David Paul



The Scottish capital currently ranks 8th for wellbeing and 31st overall as an attractive destination for people and wealth.

Edinburgh has been named as a growing hub of innovation and quality of life for its residents, according to a report released by estate agent Knight Frank.

The Wealth Report says that Edinburgh’s reputation means it can “hold a place among the most aspirational future urban hotspots”.

Knight Frank ranked Edinburgh 31st in its new City Trifecta system, which adds wellbeing and innovation to metrics that capture the concentration of wealth in major cities. Through these metrics, Edinburgh saw a greater boost in the ranking than any of the other 28 places included in the report.

Edinburgh was found to be among the top cities on the planet for wellbeing, ranking 8th in Knight Frank’s City Wellbeing Index. The report also found the city is a growing centre for wealth, with around 30,600 high-net-worth individuals (US$1 million and over in assets) and just over 230 ultra-high-net-worth individuals (more than $30 million) – placing it in the world’s top 100.

Alasdair Steele, head of Scotland commercial at Knight Frank, said: “Our annual Wealth Report once again underlines the attractiveness of Edinburgh on a number of fronts: the quality of life on offer, its growing reputation as a centre for cutting-edge research, the development of exciting new businesses, and its continued emergence as a thriving European capital.

“In many ways it is unsurprising to see Edinburgh feature so prominently in the report. The themes it touches on are just some of the influences behind Edinburgh’s growing population and attractiveness to young people. In fact, our recent survey of students in the city showed that more than half expect to remain here when they graduate, which is higher than in previous years.

“Edinburgh has a great deal to offer as a place to live and work, and we only expect its attractiveness to increase in the years ahead as the city continues to develop, with a positive knock-on effect for investment in its property market.”

The city also boasts a major role as an innovation hub on the global stage, having been named one of the most innovative cities in the world in Knight Frank’s Active Capital’ report, published last year.

Edinburgh was ranked fourth among 288 major cities from around the world based on a range of variables, including data related to the strength of research outputs, economic prosperity and quality of life.

With more than 160 research institutions, Edinburgh was identified as one of Britain’s major research and development hubs.


Just last month, Edinburgh Council announced a ten-year plan to deliver a better connected, net-zero carbon transport system for Scotland’s capital.

Transport and Environment Convener Councillor Lesley Macinnes said that Edinburgh is “home to some of history’s greatest innovators” and that the new transport strategy is a “bold, forward-looking strategy, befitting of this pioneering city, which will transform our streets, neighbourhoods and connections with the rest of the world for generations to come.”

And the city has also seen a boost in the area of technology, with the city being named alongside Glasgow as a hub for tech employment.

Data from Tech Nation revealed that more than 69,000 such jobs were advertised in Edinburgh and Glasgow in 2019, making the sector one of the largest employers.

Edinburgh is was slightly ahead, with 23% of its workforce in digital tech roles compared to 22% of Glasgow’s workforce hold digital tech-related positions.

David Paul

Staff Writer, DIGIT

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