Here They Come: A Look at the Future of Cities in the Internet Age

Here They Come: A Look at the Future of Cities in the Internet Age

Cities with large Internet sectors — industries that create and/or rely on the features and scale of the Internet — tend to have larger populations, greater overall productivity, higher income levels, and lower unemployment and poverty rates, a report from the and the finds. Using the Internet sector as a proxy for the “new economy,” the report, (21 pages, PDF), examined all 382 metropolitan statistical areas in the United States and found that the sector contributes, on average, about 3.3 percent of both employment and number of businesses. Among the five largest MSAs, the New York-Newark-Jersey City-NY-NJ-PA metro area had the largest number of new economy jobs and businesses, although such jobs accounted for a greater percentage of the economy in Dallas-Ft. Worth-Arlington, TX metro area. Based on case studies of the Columbus, OH; Kansas City, MO-KS; Phoenix-Mesa-Scottsdale, AZ; and Pittsburgh, PA metro areas, the report highlights the need for additional investment in infrastructure and education, as well as the removal of barriers to access. City leaders and other stakeholders should also focus on upgrading public transportation systems; implementing open data systems that enable businesses to improve their products, services, and efficiency while helping government gather feedback on services to constituents; fast-tracking pilot projects in municipal procurement systems; and forging partnerships with the private sector.