Tech Cities: What are they and where is Vietnam?


Savills defines a Tech City as an important tech hub in its region for expanding global tech companies. A Tech City is also a venture capital investment hotspot, a vibrant city to live and work, and a generator of, and magnet for, talent.

Savills Tech Cities are the most successful homes for tech and start-up companies. These cities are among the fastest growing economies in the world with a projected GDP growth of 36% in the next decade, against a rate of 19% across other developed cities.


The Savills Tech Cities index measures what makes a successful Tech City by assessing a comprehensive set of over 100 metrics under six categories: (1) Business Environment; (2) Tech Environment; (3) City Buzz & Wellness; (4) Talent Pool; (5) Real Estate Costs; (6) Mobility.


New York has overtaken San Francisco to be the premier Tech City in 2019 with access to a deep talent pool and the reputation as a global center of commerce.

San Francisco remains to be a global tech hub with higher tech environment ranking than New York.

London ranks third with impressive performance on city buzz and wellness, mobility and venture capital investment.


“Mobility” examines how effective our cities are at getting people from A to B. As infrastructure have important tangible impacts on urbanization, transportation and environment, it is important that Tech Cities are assessed with mobility in mind. Even if a city has a good pool of tech talent, if employees cannot get to their workplace quickly and cheaply this will harm the prospects for tech occupiers, and the overall success of the city.

For the first time, five mainland Chinese cities make Savills ranking and bring our total to 30 Tech Cities. Major Asian cities lead when it comes to metro systems. The large, modern systems benefit from onboard wifi and air conditioning and are among the cheapest to travel on. The final pillar, urban infrastructure, looks at the quality of the urban environment. European cities compare favourably. Amsterdam, Copenhagen, Stockholm and Barcelona are among the world’s most cycle-friendly.

While not leading in any single category, taken together, London ranks first overall for mobility for its smart ticketing (mobile, contactless, Oyster), integrated across all transport modes (from rail to bus).


Despite none of Vietnam’s city included in the ranking, Savills Vietnam strongly believes that the gap between Vietnam and the top 30 global tech cities indicate learning opportunities for our cities to improve mobility and infrastructure. Ms Do Thi Thu Hang, Associate Director, Head of Research Savills Hanoi said: “Vietnam is missing two of the three elements of mobility: shared mobility services & metro system.

Meanwhile, there remains room for improvement in the quality of urban infrastructure in Hanoi & HCMC. As much as different tech cities could learn from each other, we could also learn from them how to improve our mobility & urban infrastructure, increase public transport usage, and reduce air pollution. This, combined with our advantages like tech talent pool, comparatively low real estate costs, large flow of inbound foreign investment, should raise the competitiveness of our cities in tech sector”.

Editors Note:
This article was originally published in “Real Views” from JLL, which owns the rights to this article and it is published here by the kind permission of JLL Asia-Pacific. For more information on JLL and their activities, events and market research, visit them on the web at: