Researchers from HSE University conducted a study of 15 of the world’s largest cities in Europe, Asia, and North America that assessed the cities’ labour market activity, post-quarantine economic recoveries, and the extent to which their digital infrastructures were prepared for the crisis. 

  • In the final ranking of economic policy effectiveness, Moscow took third place (64 points), behind only Seoul (75 points) and Shanghai (68 points). St. Petersburg took seventh place (55 points). The cities that performed most poorly in the assessment were London (39 points), Berlin (38 points), and Montreal (27 points).
  • The researchers note that Moscow, along with Seoul, Shanghai, and Singapore, is among the cities that pursued the most effective and balanced economic policies during the coronavirus pandemic. At the same time, the number of coronavirus cases in Asian cities was several times lower than in Moscow, and the peak of the epidemic occurred one to two months earlier.
  • The ranking assessed cities with regard to three main factors: the quality of the labour market (weighted at 40% in the overall ranking), the economic recovery after quarantine restrictions were lifted (30%), and the extent to which a city’s digital infrastructure was prepared for the crisis (30%).
  • The researchers note that despite Moscow’s relatively high number of COVID-19 cases and its long-lasting quarantine measures, the city managed to maintain a stable labour market thanks to measures taken to support business and employment. The unemployment rate in the second quarter of 2020 was only 2%, which was the lowest among cities in the world with a population of over 10 million people.
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