When it comes to international rankings the Amsterdam Area and the Netherlands excelled in 2018. Whether it was the region's thriving tech scene and quality of life, or the Netherlands' world-leading biopharma cluster and talent ranking, the list of accolades never seemed to stop growing. As 2019 begins, we've compiled a summary of some of the biggest rankings and reports than came out last year. 

Moving up IMD's World Talent Ranking

The fifth edition of the annual IMD World Talent Ranking saw the Netherlands increase its standing in 2018, moving up a place to put it in the top five. The IMD World Talent Ranking ranks countries based on three main categories: appeal; investment and development; and readiness.

One of Europe's leading biopharma clusters

The Netherlands was fourth in the Genetic Engineering & Biotechnology News' annual ranking of European biopharma clusters. Biopharma jobs, grants, patents and venture capital scored favourably cementing the Amsterdam Area’s status as a hub for innovative research with solid infrastructure.

A record-breaking year for Amsterdam's tech sector

The Amsterdam Area is the third-largest region in Europe after London and Paris for software developers, home to 216,800 professional software developers. 2018 was also a record-breaking year for Amsterdam's tech sector, as the city’s Adyen delivered the second largest European IPO with a value of $7.8 billion dollars based on market capitalisation at exit, while Elastic was fifth with $2.5 billion. The ranking was published in the State of European Tech report 2018.

Sixth in WEF's Global Competitiveness Report

The Amsterdam Area came in sixth in WEF's Global Competitiveness Report in 2018. Infrastructure, economic openness, innovative companies and high-quality education are just some of the indicators WEF uses to assess the world’s biggest economies.

How the Dutch are ahead in AI

According to a report commissioned by Microsoft and conducted by EY, Dutch companies are ahead of their European peers when it comes to how major European companies – across various sectors and markets – approach AI strategically. When compared to their European peers, Dutch companies are also slightly ahead on AI when it comes to AI developments, the report showed.

Third place on Forbes’ Global Business List

The Netherlands is in the top three on the Forbes’ Global Business List for 2018. The Netherlands scored well for economic openness, English proficiency and as being a “strategic gateway to European markets.” The influential business magazine pointed to a strong internationally-minded population with a welcoming attitude toward foreigners as just some of strengths of the Dutch.

Amsterdam world's healthiest city

Amsterdam was named the world's healthiest city in Spotahome’s Healthiest Cities Index, which ranks more than 80 locations across the world with a focus on healthy-living. It looks at 10 distinct, health related factors, with Amsterdam’s access to clean air, fresh food and high-quality exercise facilities contributing to its position.

Amsterdam ranks high for long-term real-estate investment

Savills Investment Management’s Dynamic Cities identifies the top European cities for long-term real-estate investment across three property sectors: office, retail and industrial. It ranked Amsterdam in fourth position.

Amsterdam solidifies its position as a leading startup ecosystem

The Dutch capital performed well in the 2018 edition of the Global Startup Ecosystem Report, proving that the city is an attractive location for startups. Citing unparalleled startup support to its access to talent and top-notch connectivity, it should come as no surprise that Amsterdam is leading the way. Extensive research was undertaken with data from almost 100 ecosystems, 10,000 startup executives and a whopping one million companies.

One of the happiest places to live

The Netherlands was ranked sixth in the World Happiness Report, which uses six criteria to survey residents’ happiness levels: social support, GDP, life expectancy, corruption, freedom and generosity. The Netherlands' renowned liveability, progressiveness and work-life balance were all commended in the report. In a first, 117 countries were scored on the happiness of their immigrants too.

No. 1 for work-life balance

The latest OECD Better Life Index found that residents in the Netherlands enjoy the best work-life balance in the world. The quality of life was ranked in 35 countries, including the Netherlands, Denmark, Spain, Germany and Belgium with the Netherlands coming out on top, with a whopping score of 9.3/10.

Top 10 position on the Global Talent Competitiveness Index 2018

The Netherlands was placed in the top 10 of 2018’s Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI), which ranked 119 countries in 2018. The index measures the ability of countries and cities to grow, attract and retain talent. The Netherlands came in at ninth place overall, and was ranked as the world’s best for growing and nurturing new talent and leads the way in talent competitiveness.

Top spot on KPMG’s Autonomous Vehicles Readiness Index

The Netherlands leads the way in smart mobility with the country’s widespread acceptance of electric cars, its world-class digital connectivity and high density of charging stations. It’s little wonder then that the country took the top spot on KPMG’s coveted index, the first of its kind to measure the readiness of the world’s countries in terms of adapting autonomous vehicles (AV) technology.

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