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Edinburgh and Aberdeen among top cities to live and work in

A report found the two cities in the top 10 in the UK for work and quality of life.

Improvement: Both cities were praised in the report
Improvement: Both cities were praised in the report

Edinburgh and Aberdeen are among the top ten cities in the UK in which to live and work, according to a new report.

The Demos-PwC Good Growth for Cities Index 2018 ranked Edinburgh sixth in their overall rankings while Aberdeen was in ninth place out of 42 cities.

The index measures the performance of the UK's largest cities against ten indicators including employment, health, income and skills, housing affordability and environmental factors.

Glasgow has also moved up the table climbing two places to 25, although it remains in the bottom half of the list.

The index found all three main Scottish cities are outperforming the UK in terms of jobs, skills, income and environment - four of the ten economic and social factors which combine to make the Good Growth for Cities Index.

However Scotland's poorest performing variable is health, with all cities at or below the UK average.

David Brown, Head of Government and Public Sector for PwC in Scotland, said: "Scotland's cities are in a stronger position today than prior to the financial downturn, and that is thanks to the country having continued to invest in jobs and skills.

"This leaves our cities better-placed to benefit from the increases in large-scale investment as Scottish and UK government initiatives, such as City Deals, continue to roll out across the country.

"There remain challenges in our cities, however. There is a widening gap between earnings and house prices, which keeps owner occupier rates down."

Mr Brown continued: "Scotland continues to score either at or below average when it comes to health.

"These indicators are a reminder that to enjoy 'good growth' we need to focus on alleviating long-terms sickness as well as job creation and new business formation."

'Scotland's cities are in a stronger position today than prior to the financial downturn, and that is thanks to the country having continued to invest in jobs and skills.'
David Brown, PwC

The study found there has been an improvement in work-life balance, as defined by the percentage working more than 45 hours per week, and a strong performance in skills improvements across all Scottish cities.

Across the UK this year's index shows a continuing gap between the highest performing cities of Oxford and Reading and the lowest ranking, Swansea and Sunderland.

However even the cities towards the bottom of the index have improved significantly with Swansea demonstrating the greatest improvements in employment and environmental factors.

The study found Edinburgh and Glasgow have increased their scores by 0.31 and 0.45 respectively since 2005-07, well ahead of the UK average increase of 0.29, with the rise driven by an improvement in skills among 25 to 64-year-olds.

Glasgow has seen a strong improvement in new businesses, jobs and health while Edinburgh has also seen a large improvement in new businesses compared with 2005-07, although the city has seen a widening of the gap between house prices and earnings.

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