​Edinburgh by Numbers is survey to smile about​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​​ - Cammy Day

Cammy Day, leader of City of Edinburgh CouncilCammy Day, leader of City of Edinburgh Council
Cammy Day, leader of City of Edinburgh Council
The numbers are in and this year’s findings paint a picture of a city bouncing back to better health. Published this week, the 17th annual edition of Edinburgh by Numbers provides a statistical snapshot of our Capital, collated from sources around the UK by the data team in the Council.

They’ve found that record levels of Edinburgh residents are saying they feel positive and satisfied with life in the Capital, with feelings of ‘worthwhile’ the highest they have been for a decade.

And that this positive outlook extends to the health of Edinburgh’s environment and economy. We have the highest percentage of residents who consider the climate emergency to be ‘urgent’ and we are walking and cycling more, especially for shorter journeys, while holding some of the highest satisfaction rates for public transport in the country.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

In a far cry from the height of the pandemic, the data finds that more businesses are opening than closing and that major new investment is being drawn to the city. Just look to the transformation of the West and East ends of Princes Streets in recent times and the new hotels opening and changing hands around the city. Plus, we already know that Edinburgh has been named as the top UK city outside London for foreign direct investment planned over the next year.

Our economy is listed in the data as the UK’s most productive economy outside of London and job opportunities remain some of the best in the UK. In fact, in the last 10 years we’ve seen unemployment rates more than halve from 6.3% to 2.6%.

Overall, there is a lot to smile about from this year’s results – but there are also some alarming

statistics. An increase in poverty and an aging population. Changes which place pressure on core services and infrastructure, at a time when public sector finances are limited, and Edinburgh remains the worst funded local authority in Scotland. While the recovery of tourism provides a welcome boost to our economy, this too means greater use and upkeep of facilities and we need to balance this against our Housing Emergency.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

We know these challenges are on the horizon and that’s why the Council budget we set in February prioritises poverty, climate, and vital services for residents. We can’t plan for these changes alone and reaching net zero as a city will mean everyone acting and planning for climate change.

Preparing our streets and transport for more passengers needs to happen now and our population growth will mean looking at developing different parts of the city, expanding to the West for example to create housing at scale like we’re doing at the Granton Waterfront.

We’ve already launched consultation for next year’s budget, and you can let us know what you’d like to see prioritised with our online budget survey. There has been a joint effort in recent years to work together as one city and that will set us on the right track to retain Edinburgh’s position as a special, welcoming, and unique place to live.

Related topics:

Comment Guidelines

National World encourages reader discussion on our stories. User feedback, insights and back-and-forth exchanges add a rich layer of context to reporting. Please review our Community Guidelines before commenting.