When it comes to how a city’s attributes can help young people fulfill their professional and personal ambitions, Vancouver is tops, according to a rating fostered by RBC, one of the largest Canadian Banks. It collaborated with a social organization called Youthful Cities to evaluate 27 cities on 11 distinct topics to create the 2021 Urban Work Index.
The west coast city of Vancouver scored high because of its performance on public health, equity and inclusiveness, transportation, climate change, youth jobs and a good economy. Its main drawback was cost of living which includes the highest cost in the country for housing.
Second on the list was Hamilton in the province of Ontario. In contrast to Vancouver, it scored third best on the cost of living. It did not lead in any particular category but did well overall. Next were the cities of Edmonton, Victoria, Montreal, Calgary, Ottawa/Gatineau, Toronto, Quebec City, Mississauga, Halifax, Kelowna, Winnipeg, Kitchener-Waterloo, Sudbury, Saskatoon, Lethbridge, Brampton, Laval, Yellowknife, Oshawa, Regina, Charlottetown, St. John’s, London, Moncton and Fredericton.
When consulting the index, youth can use an online tool to get a personalized view of which Canadian city would be the best place for them to work. It enables them to enter their personal preferences to get a tailored recommendation. They can then post the result on social media and discuss it with their peers.
Youthful Cities seeks to create better cities by engaging young people aged 15 to 29 to design and develop innovative solutions to their cities’ critical issues. It hopes the index will further that goal. “COVID-19 has made the future of work as a young adult seem even more precarious than usual,” said Robert Barnard, Co-Founder of Youthful Cities. “As governments and corporations are getting ready for post-COVID recovery, there is a great opportunity to create a blueprint for more inclusive and accessible work in our great Canadian cities. We hope the 2021 Urban Work Index will inform and inspire that dialogue to start now.”