When Dell this month unveiled new diagnostic tools and city blueprints that businesses, local governments and policymakers can use to help women entrepreneurs succeed, it also rated the top 10 cities doing just that.
"Women's entrepreneurship rates rose globally by 13 percent in 2017, reflecting broader momentum of increased representation by women across the public and private sectors in many regions around the world,” noted Karen Quintos, executive vice president and chief customer officer at Dell.
Women in health IT, and other tech industries for that matter, might be surprised to know that New York City edged out the San Francisco Bay Area and Silicon Valley for the top spot based on Dell’s criteria, which gauge access, policy, talent, capital, culture and technology, among other attributes.
San Francisco ranked second, with Dell listing its strengths as the operating and enabling environments, as well as capital, markets, talent, culture and technology. London was third, meanwhile, followed by Boston and Stockholm to round out the top five. The rest, in order, are Los Angeles, Washington D.C, then outside the U.S. to Singapore and Toronto. Seattle, not surprisingly, also made the list at number 10.
Two of the places Dell rated as ‘Cities to Watch’ are in the U.S., those being Chicago and Minneapolis. The others are Kuala Lumpur, Paris, Tel Aviv, Berlin and Nairobi.
Quintos said that access to capital and technology as well as cultural and political barriers, continue to limit the success of women-owned businesses. In 2017, for instance, only 2 percent of venture funding went to female founders. But cities that take action to eradicate those barriers and put in place support systems not only benefit women innovators but the city itself.
“Extensive data and analysis has demonstrated that when the impediments to female entrepreneurship are removed, there is a dramatic uplift in a city’s – and country’s – economic prospects and correlative social and cultural progress,” Dell said. “Booz and Co. called this phenomenon ‘the third billion,’ which highlights the fact that the untapped potential of women in business globally is equal to the economic output of China and India.”
The work builds on the findings of the 2017 Women Entrepreneur Cities (WE Cities) Index. Dell, with research partner IHS Markit, also unveiled what officials called “blueprints” that look at areas of strength and needed improvement to give data-driven research and recommendations about how to foster women entrepreneurs. Blueprint cities are: Austin, Boston, Mexico City, Toronto, London, Amsterdam, Sydney, Tokyo, Sao Paulo and Singapore.