City factsheet


How is the Leeds economy performing, and what are the key policy issues facing the city?

Leeds map

This factsheet compares Leeds to the five most similar European cities by size and industrial structure. These are: Essen (Germany), Düsseldorf (Germany), Dortmund (Germany), Rotterdam (Netherlands) and Leipzig (Germany)

Comparing cities in this way helps us to understand more about how well UK cities are competing on an international scale because it groups cities with similar industrial structures, rather than on their resulting economic performance. The factsheet also compares the relative strengths and weaknesses of Leeds to its European counterparts on variables such as skills, employment and productivity.

City group characteristics

Leeds is in a group of large cities characterised by a relatively large business services sector and slightly smaller public services sector.


Industrial structure


  • Manufacturing, mining and utilities 2011
  • Business services 2011
  • Public services 2011
  • Other private services 2011
  • Other sectors 2011

Industrial Structure chart

Overall economic performance

Leeds performs well on jobs and GVA particularly compared to all European cities. All of this group features in the top 100 on these measures. However against the group Leeds does less well on patents, and has a low business stock, despite its job numbers.

Note: For more about this data please see the indicator index.

Explore the full dataset

This option will take you to the main data tool and allows you to create bar charts, scatter plots and tables for the full dataset of 330 European cities, or any selection of cities you choose.

Go to the European Cities Data Tool