Distinction in travel journalism
Is independent travel journalism important to you?
Click here to keep it independent

21 Jan, 2016

2015 City Brands Index released: Paris, London, NYC take top spots

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–January 20, 2016 – New York City and Los Angeles have claimed third and fifth place, in the 2015 Anholt-GfK Roper City Brands IndexSM report, with NYC and LA improving on their 2013 rankings and DC slipping four places despite improving its score.

Paris edged past London, 2013’s best city, for the top position, winning with a score of 64.44 compared to London’s 64.14. New York came in third, followed by Sydney and Los Angeles.

Anholt-GfK City Brands IndexSM
2015 2013
Paris 1 3
London 2 1
New York City 3 4
Sydney 4 2
Los Angeles 5 7
Rome 6 5
Berlin 7 12
Amsterdam 8 11
Melbourne 9 10
Washington, D.C. 10 6

The biannual CBISM survey was conducted among citizens in 10 countries – both developed and developing – that play important and diverse roles in the flow of business, cultural, and tourism activities. In all, 5,166 online interviews were conducted with adults age 18 or over.

Simon Anholt, Independent Policy Advisor on National Identity and Reputation, comments, “Our survey was conducted before the November attacks in Paris – but, if past experience is anything to go by, such attacks do not change people’s perceptions of the city in any significant or long-lasting way. There may be a temporary change in people’s behavior towards Paris – but the attacks do not affect the reasons why people might admire the city’s beauty, cultural life, opportunities, etc. and this is what CBI measures.”

The CBI study includes six key dimensions:

  • Presence: International status and standing
  • Place: Outdoors and transport
  • Prerequisites: Basic necessities, public amenities
  • People: Friendliness, cultural diversity
  • Pulse: Interesting events and activities
  • Potential: Economic and educational opportunities

US performance

New York, Los Angeles and Washington, D.C. saw their score increase from the 2013 CBISM Study. NYC and LA rose more than two points versus 2013. Washington, D.C. gained less than one point, but still dropped four places due to being outperformed by other cities.

“Paris, London and NYC, the top three cities globally, are still struggling to bring their world-class reputations into the specific dimensions of Prerequisites and People,” said, Vadim Volos, GfK’s SVP of Public Affairs and Consulting and leader of the CBI study at GfK. “When it comes to affordability, these cities all rank at the bottom of the list (47th, 46th and 48th respectively), while New York is also marked down for its People dimension. This enables countries that are ranked lower in the overall Index to win spots among the top five for specific dimensions – giving them a foothold in the international arena.”

For the 2015 study, 5166 interviews were conducted in total, consisting of at least 500 interviews in each of Australia, Brazil, China, France, Germany, India, Russia, South Korea, UK and USA. Adults aged 18 or over are interviewed online in each country. Using the most up-to-date online population parameters, the achieved sample in each country has been weighted to reflect key demographic characteristics including age, gender, and education of the online population in that country. Fieldwork was conducted from September 10th to 23rd, 2015.

The 50 cities ranked in the survey are as follows:

  • Western Europe: Amsterdam, Barcelona, Basel, Berlin, Brussels, Dublin, Edinburgh, Geneva, London, Madrid, Milan, Paris, Rome, Stockholm, Munich*
  • Central/Eastern Europe: Istanbul, Moscow, Prague, Vienna, Warsaw
  • Asia Pacific: Auckland, Bangkok, Beijing, Hong Kong, Melbourne, Mumbai, Seoul, Shanghai, Singapore, Sydney, Tokyo
  • North America: Chicago, Denver, Los Angeles, New York, Philadelphia, Seattle, Toronto, Washington D.C., Dallas Fort Worth*, Houston*
  • Latin America: Buenos Aires, Mexico City, Rio de Janeiro
  • Middle East/Africa: Cairo, Cape Town, Doha, Dubai, Durban, Johannesburg

About Simon Anholt

Professor Simon Anholt is recognized as the world’s leading authority on national image and identity. Anholt developed the concept of the Nation Brands IndexSM and the City Brands IndexSM in 2005. He is President of the Anholt Institute in Copenhagen and the founder and Editor Emeritus of the quarterly journal, Place Branding and Public Diplomacy, as well as author of Brand New Justice, Brand America, Competitive Identity, and Places: Image, Identity, Reputation.

About GfK

GfK is the trusted source of relevant market and consumer information that enables its clients to make smarter decisions. More than 13,000 market research experts combine their passion with GfK’s long-standing data science experience. This allows GfK to deliver vital global insights matched with local market intelligence from more than 100 countries. By using innovative technologies and data sciences, GfK turns big data into smart data, enabling its clients to improve their competitive edge and enrich consumers’ experiences and choices.

For more information, please visit http://www.gfk.com/us or follow GfK on Twitter.

Liked this article? Share it!