Best Cities For Startups

To find the world’s best start-up cities, we looked at 8 different factors: business infrastructure, quality of life, healthcare, average commute time, internet speed, the availability of co-working spaces, office costs and the strength of talent.

Vienna, Tokyo and Madrid pinched the top spots but there are plenty more worthy winners worldwide. Use the dropdown menu to discover how each city scored per category. Don’t forget to visit our Scoring page for a summary of how we totted up the results.


We scored each city according to the following 8 categories which impact start-ups. From quality of life to business incentives, we added up scores from each category to reach an overall ranking.

Quality of life

Many factors contribute to a good quality of life. We looked at health, environment, happiness and comfort. From low crime rates to pollution, find out which city came out on top.


The standard of healthcare where you live has a huge impact on your ability to perform. We looked at the quality of services available and the associated costs.

Office cost

Which cities provide the biggest bang for your buck? High rental costs, lack of space and availability can be a huge barrier to start-ups. We compared office rental costs per square meter and looked at the average office size to find a winner.

Business infrastructure

Which cities run like clockwork? From education to IT, energy and investment services, discover the best cities for business infrastructure.

Talent pool

Talented employees exist worldwide but which cities boast the highest calibre of skills, education and growth potential? Washington DC — the home of the White House — came out on top.


Nobody wants to spend their life trundling from A to B. We looked at the best cities to commute in terms of transport links and average travelling time.

Internet speed

Is there anything more frustrating than a dodgy internet connection? Spare yourself embarrassing conference calls with clients that can’t hear you over crackly lines.

Co-working spaces

Co-working allows start-ups the freedom and flexibility to collaborate on their terms. We’ve sussed out the top cities for on-demand co-working.

* Data sourced from Numbeo, Atkearney, Nomad List, CoWorker and GCTCI Study.