City factsheet


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

Luton map

This factsheet compares Luton to its five most similar European cities in size and industrial structure. These are: Osnabrück (Germany), Almere (Netherlands), Europ’ Essonne (Massy) (France), Lübeck (Germany), Chemnitz (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 Luton to its European counterparts on variables such as skills, employment and productivity.

City group characteristics

Luton is a small city and is part of a group with a relatively large private services sector and a similarly sized business and public 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

Luton comes relatively high in its group (third) on productivity (GVA per worker), but tends to rank at the bottom on many other indicators, including patents and employment.

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