Toronto has once again been named one of the world's best cities, feted for its economic potential, world-class learning institutions, and number of Global 500 company headquarters.
The Six ranked 24th out of 100 cities on the 2023 edition of the World's Best Cities list, just behind Budapest and just ahead of Sydney. The ranking is compiled by Resonance Consultancy, an advisory company specializing in tourism, real estate, and economic development. Metropolis heavy hitters London, Paris, and New York lead the top three, with Tokyo, Dubai, Barcelona, Rome, Madrid, Singapore, and Amsterdam rounding out the top 10.
Notably, the Ukrainian capital of Kyiv -- currently under invasion by Russia -- was named the honorary best city, while Moscow and St. Petersburg were disqualified.
The ranking -- which includes global cities with populations of more than 1M -- is determined using a “combination of statistical performance and qualitative evaluations by locals and visitors in 24 areas grouped into six core categories,” taking into account everything from the weather, safety, landmarks and culture to business performance, education, and social media engagement.
The ranking’s authors note that while cities have been “hobbled over the last three years” due to the global pandemic, the included urban centres are showing strong signs of rejuvenation and resiliency.
“Given the new rules of post-pandemic migration, the rise of remote work and the never-ending search for housing affordability, more cities are catching the imagination of global talent more frequently, with urban wealth and vibrancy created in more places than ever before,” reads the report. “The planet’s urban citizens have begun to gather again, once more colliding and creating the culture, wealth and energy that defines the zeitgeist and path forward for their countries, regions and the planet."
Toronto specifically has been acknowledged for its financial prospects, diverse population, and access to top-rated educational institutions.
“Economic growth, fueled by immigration and global investment, has Canada’s largest city poised for big things,” reads the report.
“With almost half of its population foreign-born, Toronto’s top 25 finish this year is powered by diversity and education, with its eponymous university, U of T, ranking #9 globally and its residents finishing #20 for the planet’s most educated. All that talent, about to increase drastically due to Canada’s embrace of skilled immigrants, will supercharge an economy that already boasts the seventh-highest number of Global 500 head offices.”
Resonance also notes Toronto’s recognition in 2021 as the fastest-growing metropolitan area in North America by the Centre for Urban Research and Land Development, as well as its lofty population projections, to trail only New York and Mexico City on the continent within 50 years. Notable cultural updates, such as Massey Hall’s $184M renovation, and new hotels such as the W, also helped secure its spot on the list.
Of course, the city is no stranger to ending up on “best cities” lists, having been recognized in the past for a number of its attributes including being one of the world's best cities for expats, women, and even finding love.
On this particular one, however, its standing seems to be slipping, with its ranking down from a 13th-place finish in 2021 -- it’s highest ever -- and 17th place in 2020. No explanation was provided by the authors for its lower-place finish this year.