04Leaders Surveyed

The City Leaders’ Survey was distributed to the leaders and directly elected mayors of the local and combined authorities that make up the 63 largest urban areas in the UK – using the Primary Urban Area definition – a measure of built-up area.1

This is the first survey of its kind that Centre for Cities and Arup have carried out. Around a quarter of leaders filled in the survey. All responses were gathered between 26 September and 26 October 2018.2

The leaders who responded together represent over 13 million people, which is equivalent to 20 per cent of the UK population. Their areas contribute £334 billion to the British economy and are home to 21 per cent of all jobs in the UK.3

Of the leaders who disclosed this information, the below charts represent their political party, gender and occupational background.

Figure 1: Demographics and political party of survey respondents


  • 1 More information is available at https://www.centreforcities.org/city-by-city/puas
  • 2 While the survey was in circulation with leaders there were events that may have influenced or affected responses including the political Party Conferences and continued Brexit negotiations. The 2018 Budget took place after the survey closed on 26 October 2018.
  • 3 Population: ONS 2018, Population estimates, 2016 and 2017 data; GVA: ONS 2017, Regional Value Added (Balanced Approach), 2016 data (note Northern Ireland data is not available); Jobs: ONS 2018, Business Register and Employment Survey, 2017 data.