Best-Performing Cities

For Immediate Release
December 14, 2016

Milken Institute Announces 2016 Best-Performing Cities

San Jose Is on Top, Second Year in a Rows

For Immediate Release

LOS ANGELES—The Milken Institute's annual Best-Performing Cities index for 2016 shows that tech is still tops, as cities that excel in innovation drive the nation's economic dynamism. With an ecosystem for entrepreneurship, San Jose, CA, claimed the top spot again.

"America's best-performing cities yet again demonstrated their innovation advantage aligned with high levels of entrepreneurship," says Ross DeVol, chief research officer of the Milken Institute and one of the report's authors. "That is witnessed not just in 'traditional' technology but in medical and financial services."

The Best-Performing Cities index, compiled since 1999, uses a comprehensive, fact-based set of criteria to rank 200 large and 201 small metros across the United States. As an outcomes-based index, growth in employment, wages and technology output are heavily weighted; metrics such as cost-of-living and quality-of-life conditions, often highly subjective, are not included.

Highlights from the report "2016 Best-Performing Cities: Where America's Jobs Are Created and Sustained" include:

"While technology still powers the top performers, we also see the return of real estate, tourism and auto-manufacturing related jobs on our 2016 index," says DeVol. "Top-performing metros have cohesive strategies that allow them to distinguish themselves from others. They offer important lessons for other cities."

Top 10 Best-Performing Large Cities

Metropolitan statistical area (MSA) /metropolitan division (MD) 2016 rank 2015 rank Change
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA (MSA) 1 1 0
Provo-Orem, UT (MSA) 2 2 +1
Austin-Round Rock, TX (MSA) 2 4 +2
San Francisco-Redwood City-South San Francisco, CA (MD) 4 2 -2
Dallas-Plano-Irving, TX (MD) 5 5 0
Raleigh, NC (MSA) 6 6 0
Nashville-Davidson-Murfreesboro-Franklin, TN (MSA) 7 18 +11
Fort Collins, CO (MSA) 8 14 +6
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL (MSA) 9 28 +19
Seattle-Bellevue-Everett, WA (MD) 10 7 -3

"2016 Best-Performing Cities: Where America's Jobs Are Created and Sustained," by Ross DeVol, Joe Lee, and Minoli Ratnatunga is available for download at Data for all metros is available on the interactive Best-Performing Cities website. Join the Twitter conversation at #bpcfor2016.

About the Milken Institute

The Milken Institute is a nonprofit, nonpartisan think tank determined to increase global prosperity by advancing collaborative solutions that widen access to capital, create jobs and improve health. It does this through independent, data-driven research, action-oriented meetings and meaningful policy initiatives.



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View Best-Performing Cities Report
Download The 2016 Best-Performing Cities Full Report (PDF)

View Top 10 Large Cities Slideshow
View Top 10 Large Cities Slideshow

View Top 10 Small Cities Slideshow
View Top 10 Small Cities Slideshow

U.S. Interactive Map
View Interactive Map of Best-Performing Cities

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