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Cebu City Ranks 436th Best City to Live in 2024: Oxford Economics Study

Cebu City Ranks 436th
A recent study by Oxford Economics, a renowned independent global advisory firm based in the United Kingdom, has positioned Cebu City as it ranks the 436th best city to live in for 2024.

This ranking is part of the firm’s annual Oxford Economics Global Cities Index, which evaluates the world’s 1,000 largest urban economies.

The Oxford Economics Global Cities Index

The Oxford Economics Global Cities Index is a comprehensive ranking system that assesses cities across five key categories: economics, human capital, quality of life, environment, and governance. This index is a critical resource for business leaders, policymakers, and academics, offering insights into city performances and aiding in informed decision-making.

“The Global Cities Index scores cities based on how they are performing today,” the report explains. In the 2024 ranking, Cebu City ranks 436th, positioned just behind Changwon in South Korea.

Detailed Rankings and Comparisons

Here is a snapshot of Cebu City’s rank in comparison with other global cities:

1New YorkUnited States
433Kota BharuMalaysia
435ChangwonSouth Korea
436Cebu CityPhilippines

Performance Across Key Categories

Economic Performance

Cebu City ranked 379th in terms of economic performance, reflecting a solid position in the global landscape. The city’s economic indicators were a significant factor in its overall ranking.

Quality of Life

In terms of quality of life, Cebu City was positioned at 683rd. This category evaluates factors such as life expectancy, housing expenditure, income per person, recreation and cultural sites, income equality, and internet speed. The report highlights the importance of urban policies that balance economic growth with health, equality, and cultural vibrancy.

Environmental Sustainability

Cebu City achieved a notable rank of 24th in the environment category, which measures a city’s commitment to environmental sustainability and resilience to climate change. This high ranking comes despite ongoing challenges with deforestation and unregulated development in the city’s upland areas, which have raised concerns among city planners.

3San Juan
8Port Louis
24Cebu City

Human Capital and Governance

Cebu City ranked 502nd in human capital, a category that assesses the knowledge and skills of the city’s population. In governance, all Philippine cities, including Cebu City, shared a rank of 614th. This ranking reflects the collective performance of the national government.

Top 10 Global Cities

Oxford Economics ranked New York City as the top city to live in for 2024. The top ten cities are:

  1. New York, United States
  2. London, United Kingdom
  3. San Jose, United States
  4. Tokyo, Japan
  5. Paris, France
  6. Seattle, United States
  7. Los Angeles, United States
  8. San Francisco, United States
  9. Melbourne, Australia
  10. Zurich, Switzerland

Singapore, an Asian economic powerhouse, ranked 42nd, while Seoul, South Korea’s capital, followed closely.

How Does Oxford Economics Ranking Works

The Oxford Economics ranking system provides a thorough assessment of cities worldwide, evaluating factors like economics, human capital, and governance. It offers valuable insights for policymakers and businesses to make informed decisions about urban development and investment.

  1. Economics: This aspect evaluates the economic performance of cities, including factors such as GDP, employment rates, and business opportunities. Cities with strong economic indicators rank higher in this category.
  2. Human Capital: Human capital refers to the knowledge, skills, and education level of a city’s population. This category assesses factors such as educational attainment, workforce diversity, and access to training and development programs.
  3. Quality of Life: Quality of life encompasses various factors that contribute to residents’ well-being and overall satisfaction with their living environment. This category may include metrics such as healthcare quality, housing affordability, safety, and cultural amenities.
  4. Environment: The environment category evaluates a city’s commitment to sustainability, resilience to climate change, and efforts to preserve natural resources. Factors such as air and water quality, green spaces, and environmental policies are considered in this assessment.
  5. Governance: Governance assesses the effectiveness of local government institutions in managing public services, promoting transparency and accountability, and fostering civic engagement. Good governance practices contribute to a city’s overall stability and development.

These key categories provide a comprehensive framework for evaluating cities’ strengths and weaknesses, helping policymakers, businesses, and residents make informed decisions about urban development and investment.


As Cebu City ranks 436th best city to live in globally, it highlights both its achievements and areas needing attention. The city’s commendable performance in environmental sustainability, ranking 24th, underscores its commitment to addressing climate change and environmental challenges. However, its lower rankings in quality of life (683rd) and human capital (502nd) indicate areas where significant improvements are needed. Addressing these issues is essential to enhance residents’ overall well-being and economic opportunities.

Moving forward, Cebu City’s policymakers and leaders can use these insights from the Oxford Economics Global Cities Index to guide strategic planning and development. By focusing on enhancing quality of life, such as improving healthcare, housing, and income equality, Cebu City can work towards a more balanced and prosperous urban environment. Additionally, investing in education and skill development to boost human capital will further support this goal. Addressing these key areas will be essential for Cebu to climb higher in future global rankings and ensure a better quality of life for its inhabitants.


Read Also: Philippines Ranks Second in Southeast Asia for Happiness


Written by Marjo Piedad

Traveler | Foodie | CONTENT EDITOR
📍Cebu, Philippines
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