A poor showing in jobs, income and health has put Cardiff in the bottom half of a new index which measures “good growth” among UK cities.
The Good Growth for Cities report from PricewaterhouseCoopers (PwC) and Demos measures the performance of 36 of the largest cities against factors key to economic success and well-being.
Cardiff ranked well for work-life balance, housing affordability and income distribution. But a poor performance in the more heavily-weighted elements – jobs, income and health – meant the capital’s overall ranking was lower than the UK average.
Of the cities included in the report, Cardiff came 23rd overall. Swansea, which was the other Welsh city featured, ranked 32nd.
The index was headed by Oxford, with Aberdeen, Bristol, Preston, Portsmouth, Southampton and Stoke-on-Trent also performing well.
Cardiff achieved an index value rank of -0.20, putting it above Glasgow and Swansea, but still behind Aberdeen, Edinburgh and Belfast among the six cities in devolved nations covered.
The Welsh capital’s scores were below the UK average for jobs, income, health, environment and providing for future generations.
The city scored above average for work-life balance and owner occupation, but posted average scores for transport, sectoral balance, house price to earnings and income distribution.
Nick Jones, global director of PwC’s Public Research Centre, and joint author of the report, said Cardiff had come lower in the index than the key gross value added (GVA) per capita measure of wealth would suggest.
A Cardiff council spokesman said: “It is well known that Cardiff offers a great quality of life for its residents and is a forward-thinking dynamic city.
“However, this report shows there is still work to be done and that is why the new administration has made it one of its main priorities to bring new jobs to the city and work on improving inward investment.
“The administration remains committed to reconnecting with businesses and to work with them to stimulate private sector investment.
“We also continue to collaborate closely with the Welsh Government and we both understand that if Cardiff is to grow its economy we need to work together to drive forward inward investment for Wales.”
What do you make of the report’s findings? Read some of the responses from Twitter below, and add your thoughts in the comments.
@yourcardiff Cardiff provides a good work/life balance, but transport is poor – lacking intermodal connectivity & the housing is overpriced.
— Daniel Mohamed (@danmohamed) November 20, 2012
@yourcardiff Good work/life balance providing you earn enough. I don’t have much left over to enjoy the benefits of living here.
— Jenny James (@jennyvjames) November 20, 2012
@yourcardiff Transport leaves a lot to be desired. Takes too long to get back and forth from work for a good work/life balance!
— Simon Woods (@SimonW81) November 20, 2012
@yourcardiff Fairly affordable if you have a car & don’t mind commuting, but if you want to walk/rely on public transport it’s trickier.
— Caleb Woodbridge (@CalebWoodbridge) November 20, 2012
@yourcardiff Cardiff is way behind England in wages, especially in the creative industries……why?
— Louise C (@LouBarnes40) November 20, 2012
@yourcardiff Affordable housing?Certainly couldn’t afford my house now!And my wages have increased since we bought it…
— Kathryn Hudson (@KathHudson2010) November 20, 2012
@yourcardiff I’d like to see safer cycling facilities. They address the work/life balance tenfold.
— CyclingCardiff (@CyclingCardiff) November 20, 2012