Majority Tech Industry Leaders Expect Silicon Valley to Be Surpassed as Leading Innovation Center, KPMG Says

New York, Beijing, Tokyo, London seen as becoming leading tech hubs outside Silicon Valley

For the first time in KPMG’s annual Global Technology Industry Innovation Survey, more than half of the respondents believe Silicon Valley will no longer be the technology innovation center of the world in four years. The finding is in the first of a series of reports highlighting key insights from a survey of over 740 technology industry leaders globally.

“The belief that Silicon Valley will be displaced as the leading hub underscores the continuing decentralization of technology innovation, spurred by investment in other cities and regions globally, as well as contributing factors in Silicon Valley,” said Tim Zanni, KPMG Global and U.S. Technology Leader. “Several much-discussed factors ranging from the cost-of-living to an overmatched infrastructure to questions about corporate culture are contributing to the perception that Silicon Valley may not continue to dominate tech innovation in the coming years.”

Nearly 60 percent believe that it is likely or very likely that the technology innovation center of the world will move from Silicon Valley by 2023. While not specifically addressing which city would replace Silicon Valley, in a separate question, tech industry leaders tabbed New York to become the top tech hub in addition to Silicon Valley. High profile announcements by tech giants helped push New York, Boston and Austin up in the rankings this year. Other notable risers included Taipei and Paris. Here are the top 15 cities outside Silicon Valley.

1. New York 9. Boston and Austin
2. Beijing 11. Berlin
3. Tokyo and London 12. Hong Kong SAR
5. Shanghai and Taipei 13. Washington D.C., US
7. Singapore 14. Paris, France
8. Seoul 15. Tel Aviv, Israel

The rankings reflect the perception of technology industry leaders surveyed, and provide an interesting juxtaposition when compared to four other publicly available data-driven indices.
Together, they offer additional insight into the prospects for these technology innovation hubs.  For example, New York placed in the Top 2 in three of the five indices, supporting the city’s position in KPMG’s survey. Berlin was ranked between 11th and 18th in the five rankings, showing the most consistency and strong potential as a tech innovation hub.

To see the cities in KPMG’s ranking compared across the other four indices.

At the same, time, the KPMG study shows that other countries are closing the gap on the U.S. and China in the race to be a technology innovation leader.

When considering the most promising market for tech innovation and breakthroughs that have a global impact, 23 percent of those surveyed named the U.S. compared to 34 percent in last year’s report. China remained second at 17 percent compared to 26 percent a year ago, followed by the U.K. at 9 percent, with Japan ranked fourth and Singapore and India tied for fifth. The grouping of the top 5 countries is much closer than in last year’s survey.

“Even when faced with pressing issues that call for funding, cities and countries are carving out significant investment to become a technology innovation hub due to an expected broad economic impact,” said Zanni. “They are acting on the Nobel Prize-winning theory that investing in tech innovation, the knowledge sector and human capital will drive long-term economic growth.”

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