Last week the Centre for Cities published a really interesting report looking at the economic performance of the UK’s 64 largest towns and cities over a ten year period from 2004-2013. The report looks at population changes, the number of jobs and number of businesses in each of the towns and cities and the results show a distinct north-south divide in terms of job creation over that period (you might have seen some of the news stories about the north-south divide last week).
If you’re nearing the end of your studies you might be thinking about where you want to be based once you start working in terms of location, we well as the job role and employer you want to work for. If that’s the case and you’re drawn to towns and cities then it’s certainly worth taking a look at the data, in particular the summary map that the Centre have produced to show job creation in the 64 towns and cities over the last ten years. It’s probably no surprise that London has seen one of the largest percentage increases in jobs during the period but some other towns and cities have also done well including Milton Keynes, Coventry, Aberdeen and Cambridge. Places that have seen the greatest percentage decrease in jobs during the same period include Gloucester and Rochdale.
If you want to look at the data in more detail the Centre have also produced a handy data tool so you can look at some of the stats on a city by city basis and if you want to understand some of the reasons behind the changes then Paul Swinney from the Centre has written a really informative summary of why the top five cities have done so well over the last ten years on the Guardian website. Of course it’s not necessarily as straightforward as head to the city that has seen the greatest increase in jobs over the period; the past ten years doesn’t necessarily reflect what’s going to happen over the next couple of years and you also need to consider the competition. London might have seen one of the greatest percentage increase in jobs but during the same period it also saw the greatest percentage increase in population meaning there’s more competition for those jobs, something to think about when you’re considering where to base yourself once you graduate!