Buenos Aires City Performance, Brand Strength and Reputation

Buenos Aires, Argentina’s capital and South America’s most visited city, is widely loved by artists and foreign visitors thanks to its multicultural agenda, street art and gastronomy. But how well does the city perform in rankings that study the capacity of cities to attract talent and investment? Is the city government doing a good job to protect the natural environment? How good is life quality in Buenos Aires and how attractive is Buenos Aires for digital nomads?

In this Buenos Aires guide:

  • Environmental sustainability in Buenos Aires
  • Buenos Aires quality of life
  • Buenos Aires and innovation
  • How attractive for digital nomads?
  • How influential is Buenos Aires internationally
  • Economic attractiveness of Buenos Aires and ease of doing business

How Buenos Aires performs in terms of sustainability

Regarding environmental sustainability, Buenos Aires’ performance is average both globally and in the Latin American context. The Arcadis Sustainable Cities Index ranked Buenos Aires 80th in its 2016 study. The city ranked 63rd in the planet sub-index and even lower in the profit (82nd) and people sub-index (88th).

According to the Green Cities Index (2010), Buenos Aires’ overall sustainability performance among Latin American cities is below average. The city’s biggest problem is water quality, which is ranked well-below average. It also ranked below average for its air quality, waste and sanitation. The overall environmental governance, sanitation and the management of energy and CO2 resources score average in this report.


What is life quality like in Buenos Aires?

In terms of general life quality, Latin American cities are not performing well in Mercer’s Quality of Life City Ranking. In this index, the Argentinian capital ranks 93rd.

Regionally, the best positioned city is Montevideo, which ranks 48th in the 2016 study. According to the study, South America’s less than stellar results were due to low scores in safety, political unrest and drug-related violence.


How much effort is Buenos Aires putting into innovation?

The 2018 Innovation Cities index ranked the Argentinian capital 88th for its potential as an innovation economy. This is twenty-two positions lower than last year and contrasts its previous ascending tendency, yet still far better than its 2014 ranking as 242nd.


How much global influence does Buenos Aires have?

Buenos Aires ranked 40th in the 2017 Global Power City Index. Its best-valued aspects are livability (26th) and cultural interaction (27th), while the city’s economy (44th) and investment in research and development rank lower (38th).

The Global Cities Index ranked Buenos Aires 26th in its 2017 report, making it the most influential Latin American city. Compared to 2012, Buenos Aires’ ranking has fallen four positions.

Gottlieb Duttweiler Institute’s Global City Ranking that examined 68 of the most important cities in the world to measure how well they fulfil their networking role in global terms, ranked Buenos Aires much higher –11th—in their 2017 study. Once again, this is the highest position Latin American cities have achieved in the ranking. Only Mexico City comes in close, ranking 15th in the same index.


How attractive is Buenos Aires for new businesses and entrepreneurs?

In a study by the University of Rosario in 2014, Buenos Aires ranked as the 8th most attractive Latin American city for doing business. This was two positions higher from the previous, 2013 edition where the city scored especially high for its human capital (3rd).

However, both editions generally classify Buenos Aires’ capacity for attracting new investment as “reluctant” mainly due to a lack of trust towards official statistics and constant changes in the legislation regarding doing business. The position of Buenos Aires is similar in América Economía’s Ranking of the Best Cities to Do Business, where it ranked 7th in their 2016 study.


How attractive is Buenos Aires for digital nomads?

Two criteria stand out when it comes to deciding whether Buenos Aires is a suitable fit for a digital nomad: speed of Internet and affordability. The Digital Nomad Index ranks Buenos Aires the best of 56 cities when it comes to the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment and praises the low cost of a beer (6th). Also the Nomad List ranks the city highly for affordability. What is important to note, however, is that most payments still need to be done in cash, according to the study. This is not just typical of the city; Argentina in general performs very poorly as a cashless society and ranks up-to-last in the Digital Life Abroad report.

Despite being affordable, Buenos Aires is also known for its low-speed Internet. The index ranks the city last (56th) with a score of 0.54 (out of 10 possible points). Furthermore, the same index ranks the city only 51st for availability of free WiFi.

It really depends on what one considers important, for deciding whether Buenos Aires would be suitable as a city to live and work from.


Last updated September 2019


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