Nature

Tracking 20 leading cities’ Sustainable Development Goals research

  • NATURE INDEX

Tracking 20 leading cities’ Sustainable Development Goals research

Leading science cities’ output related to the United Nations’ 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) speak to research strengths and priorities. This analysis features articles in the 82 selected natural-sciences journals tracked by the Nature Index that were filtered using SDG-related classifiers in Digital Science’s Dimensions database.

Nature Index’s signature metric, Share, is used to measure cities’ SDG-related article output for the period 2015–20. Share is a fractional count for an article allocation to an institution, city or country/region, that accounts for the proportion of authors on the article whose institutional affiliation is with that institution or location. (For more information on the analyses used in this article, see ‘A guide to Nature Index’.)

Sustainable agenda

City/metropolitan area

Location

Total Share for 17 SDGs, 2015–20

Proportion of total Share related to 17 SDGs

Beijing

China mainland, Hong Kong, Macau

1,753.49

11.9%

San Francisco Bay Area

United States

875.16

8.5%

New York metropolitan area

United States

862.76

7.0%

Baltimore–Washington

United States

745.40

8.9%

Boston metropolitan area

United States

720.97

6.5%

Shanghai

China mainland, Hong Kong, Macau

579.22

7.9%

Nanjing

China mainland, Hong Kong, Macau

499.42

10.5%

Singapore

Singapore

427.73

11.9%

Los Angeles metropolitan area

United States

414.82

7.8%

Seoul metropolitan area

South Korea

395.26

8.7%

Wuhan

China mainland, Hong Kong, Macau

325.73

9.8%

Chicago metropolitan area

United States

316.02

6.7%

Paris metropolitan area

France

300.29

5.1%

San Diego metropolitan area

United States

295.05

8.0%

Guangzhou

China mainland, Hong Kong, Macau

286.37

9.8%

Tokyo metropolitan area

Japan

278.98

3.7%

Tianjin

China mainland, Hong Kong, Macau

273.49

12.5%

London metropolitan area

United Kingdom

268.96

6.0%

Boulder

United States

266.42

16.3%

Zurich

Switzerland

258.72

7.2%

Top targets

SDG-related output for 20 leading science cities in the Nature Index is mapped against the three leading SDGs in the index. Performance over time is indicated by coloured arrows, which track whether cities’ output related to the three SDGs has increased, decreased or remained the same over the period 2015–20.

Top targets: SDB-related output on SDGs 3, 7 & 13 for 20 cities

Data analysis by Catherine Cheung; infographic by Bec Crew, Tanner Maxwell and David Payne

The complete visualization, showing 20 cities’ performance in 10 selected SDGs, can be viewed in the PDF version of this article.

A tale of three cities

Baltimore–Washington is the most prolific area for SDG3-related research, with a Share of 264.45. Baltimore is home to Johns Hopkins University, which in 2019 spent a record US$2.9 billion on research and development, higher than any other university in the United States for the 41st consecutive year, according to the US National Science Foundation. Despite such strong commitment to research, the city has significant health inequalities. The 2018 State of Health in Baltimore white paper reports that life expectancy varies by up to 19 years between neighbourhoods.

Many major science cities are highly active in clean-energy research, often in response to local challenges. Beijing leads, with a Share of 1,241.53 for SDG7. The city hosts the Bluetech Clean Air Alliance, a non-profit organization launched in 2012 to improve China’s air quality. Of its 31 institutional members, 21 are drawn from the Chinese cities highlighted here, including 12 in Beijing.

Institutions in Boulder, Colorado, have the highest proportion of total research output related to all 17 SDGs (16.3%) among the leading 20 cities. The city’s strongest performance is for SDG13 (ranked fifth), with a Share of 197.79. In 2018, Boulder and San Miguel counties partnered with the city of Boulder to file a lawsuit against Suncor and ExxonMobil for contributions to climate change, they claim the oil companies have made — the impacts of which include wildfires and drought.

doi: https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-021-02406-9

This article is part of Nature Index 2021 Science cities, an editorially independent supplement produced with the financial support of third parties. About this content.

Subjects

Products You May Like

Articles You May Like

FTX is paying $51 million in cash for Voyager assets, court records show
ISRO Loses Link With Mars Orbiter Mission as Satellite’s Battery Gets Drained
This is how we readied the Club portfolio for the big OPEC+ production cut
Is Passive-Aggressiveness a Personality Disorder?
Space Development Agency is now officially part of the Space Force

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.