Switzerland leads Global Talent Competitiveness Index once more


The country’s performance in the Global Talent Competitiveness Index has been consistently strong for the past six years. Yet, the report points out room for improvement, especially regarding Switzerland’s efforts to achieve gender equality in the workplace. The Index also ranked the most competitive cities to grow, attract and retain entrepreneurial talent. Zurich and Geneva are in the top 20.


Talent competitiveness, according to the Global Talent Competitiveness Index (GTCI), refers to the set of policies and practices that enable a country to develop, attract, and empower human capital that contributes to productivity and prosperity. The Index is built on an Input-Output model, which combines an assessment of what countries do to produce and acquire talents and the kind of skills that are available to them as a result.

European countries continue to lead the GTCI 2019 ranking with 16 of them in the top 25. Switzerland ranks at number one of the GTCI for the sixth consecutive time, Singapore came in second and the United States in third place. For the first time since its launch in 2014, the GTCI compared countries’ performances from 2014-2016 and 2017-2019. While the top two countries, Switzerland and Singapore, did not budge from their spots, the United States climbed from fourth to third place and ousted Luxembourg from the top three in the second three-year period.

Strong, consistent performance but room for improvement

Switzerland has maintained its top position due to its strong performance across all pillars of the GTCI model. It ranks first in the Retain Talent as well as Vocational and Technical Skills pillars and is runner-up in the Enable and Growth pillars. It came in at fourth place in the Global Knowledge pillar. The country also performed well in sub-pillars such as Lifelong Learning, Sustainability and Employability.

Switzerland’s lowest performance this year is the Attract Talent pillar, where it placed fifth. This is due to its weak performances regarding Internal Openness. This subcategory includes gender equality variables such as female graduates (85th), gender earnings gap (27th) and leadership opportunities for women (20th) as well as social inclusion variables such as tolerance of immigrants (34th).

Zurich and Geneva are able to attract and retain talent

One of the key messages of this year’s report is that cities will become increasingly important in their role as entrepreneurial hubs. The report maintains that dynamic ecosystems with incubators and accelerators will become more and more relevant as they foster young entrepreneurs and startups.

In the cities ranking, Zurich placed fifth and Geneva scored rank 16. The two cities did especially well in the Retain Talent pillar, in which Zurich is runner-up and Geneva in fifth place. Zurich also came in at rank eight in the Attract pillar.

Two additional findings point out that digitalization and globalization will increase the role entrepreneurial talent plays and that talent inequalities are broadening, meaning there is a strong connection between a country’s GDP and its talent competitiveness. While talent competitiveness is strengthening in countries where it is already comparatively high, it is weakening in those where it is already relatively low.

(Source: GTCI 2019)(SOK)(Picture: Pixabay)