In a report published by global management consultancy Kearney, Johannesburg outweighs Cape Town in a Best Cities Report. These stats are not indications of the Cape’s beauty, but rather, analyses the performance of 156 cities across the globe, and how they have been impacted by the pandemic and by containment measures.
Breathe Mother City, breathe. Cape Town can keep her crown.
This year alone, the Cape has racked up numerous accolades representative of our stunning landscape. Chapmans Peak was named as one of the worlds most ‘Insta-worthy’ road trip routes and Cape Town was named Africa’s Leading City Destination for 2021.
Camps Bay was recognised as one of the most beautiful beaches in the world and the Mother City is right up there with the world’s leading party destinations, with our rooftop bar scene soaring above the likes of LA and Barcelona.
Our food and hospitality scene is off the charts, too. The Cape Grace, The Silo Hotel, and Ellerman House took the first, second and third spots respectively at this years World Travel and Leisure’s ‘World’s Best awards.
La Colombe ranked 7th best restaurant in the world and Wolfgat, located in the charming fishing village of Paternoster, was named the Best Restaurant in the World for 2019 in the internationally-acclaimed World Restaurant Awards.
It’s evident that Cape Town has earned her title as the Mother City. However, when it comes to the COVID-19 pandemic, the City of Gold is proving more adaptable and dynamic, according to Kearney’s 2021 Global Cities Report.
The study takes into account cities’ ability to attract and retain global capital, people, and ideas and to sustain this performance in the long term — elements affected by the pandemic which left some locations faring better than others in terms of resilience and recovery.
Survival of the fittest
In essence, the better and faster countries can adapt and recover, the better they rank, and according to this report, Johannesburg has done a better job than Cape Town.
Of the 13 African cities included, Johannesburg came in first, well 55th, place (the same position as 2020). Cape Town, however, dropped four places from last years 77th place, now ranking 81st.
A grim outlook
With regards to outlook, both cities were placed in the bottom 50 of the complete list. Here, Cape Town is placed at 122nd place and Joburg at 126th.
The global cities outlook is based on 13 indicators across four categories, including personal well-being (safety, healthcare, inequality and environment), economics (long-term investments and GDP), innovation (entrepreneurship, private investments and incubators), and governance (stability, transparency, bureaucracy and ease of doing business).
In terms of knock-on effects on healthcare and future viability, the company noted an overall drop in scores as a result of the pandemic, with the personal well-being metrics being the biggest predictors of change.
“While historically leading global cities were by many measures hit hardest by the pandemic, they also demonstrated their resilience and adaptive capacity. Our analysis indicates they are now best positioned for recovery, with their enduring global connectivity serving as a foundation for rebuilding and adapting to a changed world,” says the group.
New York, London, Paris, and Tokyo retained the top four positions in the Index.
“While global cities that are already showing signs of economic recovery are likely to continue their upward trends, lower-scoring and less-connected global cities will likely drop in our rankings next year as the full effect of the pandemic is reflected in the metrics used for measurement, particularly given the uneven distribution of vaccines around the world.
“Nevertheless, the unprecedented global efforts in vaccine development and production have hastened a return to some form of normalcy, partial and fragmented as it is. As cities enter this new phase, they are armed with real-world experience and better science, enabling leaders to better navigate the ongoing turmoil,” Kearney adds.
Kearney highlights these five strategic steps for cities leaders to consider:
- Win in the competition for global talent
- Embrace the rapidly growing digital economy
- Ensure economic resilience by balancing global and local resources
- Adapt in the face of climate change
- Invest in individual and community well-being
View the full report here.