February 11, 2013

JOEL KOTKIN: The Cities Winning The Battle For The Fastest Growing High-Wage Sector In The U.S. “Notably absent from the top 10 are Chicago and the big metropolitan areas of the Northeast and California that have traditionally dominated high-end business services. The only exception is the third-ranked San Francisco-Oakland-Fremont metropolitan statistical area. . . . Yet the other leaders on our list are generally smaller, growing metro areas whose expansions have been propelled by a rapid increase in employment in technology and professional management services. These include our top-ranked metro area, Austin-Round Rock-San Marcos, Texas, which enjoyed over 46% growth in employment in professional services since 2001; fourth-place Raleigh-Durham, N.C.; and No. 5 Salt Lake City, Utah. These areas have enjoyed strong net-in migration of educated workers, and have poached companies from more expensive regions. More surprising still has been the rapid ascent of such unheralded regions as second-place Jacksonville, Fla., and Oklahoma City (sixth place).”