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YouthfulCities is excited to launch our first-ever Canada-wide YouthfulCities Index in 13 Canadian cities. It is the first public national comparable urban index, measuring 121 indicators spanning all 20 youthful infrastructure areas. And the data has all been collected by youth across the country. It’s their data too. This Index creates credible data for decision-makers, provide inspiration for urban innovation efforts, launches a network of young urban decoders, and creates national exposure for Canadian cities.
Our top three finishers are Toronto, Montreal and Vancouver. The story of the top three is that they’re all holistic pictures of youthfulness. They don’t just do well in one or two areas, they do well across the overwhelming majority of our indicators. So, what about the other ten cities? How can they improve? Most of them are doing one or two things well, but that’s not enough to get them to the top of our Index. Still, small improvements in individual attributes do incrementally add up to increase the overall youthfulness for cities. Halifax, Hamilton and Winnipeg, for example, would simply need to create youth advisory boards connected to their city councils to dramatically increase their scores in Civic Engagement. This simple commitment would have a tangible effect on the youth in each city.
Young people live in a monthly deficit position in Canadian cities making urban centers unaffordable to the country's future generations. On average young people are losing $750 per month by living in cities across the country.
In 2019 Youthful Cities launched the first Urban Work Index with the help of RBC Future Launch and focused on topic areas traditionally associated with work and cities like affordability, employment, and entrepreneurship.
The Youthful Cities Program is a partnership between Coventry UK City of Culture, the British Council and Youthful Cities to facilitate a cultural and creative skills exchange between young people across the globe. It has been developed to enable young adults (age 18-25) to creatively respond to important, urgent and youth-focused issues in their cities, encouraging more active participation in civic matters.
Where is the best place for urban work in Canada? We set out to answer this question with our Urban Work Index, ranking 21 cities across Canada on various attributes to create a holistic picture of work.
The 2019 Canadian Index offers an expanded ranking of cities across Canada since our 2018 index, with 22 cities and 21 attributes. For this year’s version, we also worked to expand the indicator list to further capture the elements that youth care about in their city, collecting over 10,000+ data points for 123 indicators.