You start with the Brookings Institute’s “Global Metro Monitor,” and then you move on over to CityLab breaking down the data. In there, you’ll find a chart of, essentially, the 30 fastest-growing cities in the world in 2014. Basically, it looks at the change in GDP per capita and employment rate from 2013 to 2014, and then ranks the cities off of that; about 300 global metro areas were included in this, but (of course) it’s a little harder to get data on some parts of the world than others. You can take some of this with a grain of salt, no doubt.
Here’s the chart:
19 of the 30 cities / metro areas listed here are “Developing Asia-Pacific,” which means 63 percent of this list is from that part of the world with that classification. (The highest is Kunming, because Macau is “developed Asia-Pacific,” which is what happens when you have a shitload of casinos everywhere.)
Things can change for a city relatively quickly, so this doesn’t necessarily mean that the developing Asia-Pacific world is about to be the center of the universe (although the U.S. isn’t exactly winning any awards on this Global Livable Cities Index, either), but then lookie here:
The slowest-growing metro areas of 2014 have 21/30 coming from either Western Europe or North America, which are generally pretty-developed places. (I guess that Albuquerque Breaking Bad boom-or-bust situation came true, eh?)
Basically, you take these two charts together — and while maybe there’s additional context that isn’t here, sure — and the picture you get back is “North America and Western Europe economies are, broadly, slowing and declining; developing economies in Asia-Pacific are, broadly-speaking, growing faster.”
As for that low Syracuse ranking (second chart), read this for some context on what’s happening there with development and growth.
The world, she is a-changing.