News > 2015 > Greater Montreal: A metropolis in catch-up mode, and facing a number of challenges

Greater Montreal: A metropolis in catch-up mode, and facing a number of challenges

November 16, 2015

The Institut du Québec (IdQ), in co-operation with the Board of Trade of Metropolitan Montreal and Montréal International, today published a report listing 29 socio-economic indicators for the Montréal metropolitan area, comparing it with 14 other North American cities and four European cities. The indicators, divided into five categories (the economy, innovation, human capital, quality of life, and overall attractiveness), produced a picture of Greater Montreal’s strengths and weaknesses, with a view to suggesting what measures need to be taken to improve the city’s performance.

“Greater Montréal does have some strengths, like its quality of life and the growth in its GDP and productivity,” said IdQ President Raymond Bachand. “It also remains competitive in attracting foreign businesses. However, the region faces many challenges in terms of stimulating innovation and the availability of human capital.”


  • Montreal lags significantly in terms of economic activity, but has some promising indicators of economic growth, suggesting a relative improvement in the Montreal economy.
  • With respect to human capital, Montreal has serious challenges. The drop-out rate and the proportion of graduates in the population remain very worrisome.
  • There are many factors encouraging innovation, but they are not resulting in recognized innovations. Montreal has ingredients that should lead to innovation, but the recipe is not working.
  • Montreal’s quality of life remains its main asset. The region has a number of advantages.
  • Montreal is a relatively attractive city for businesses looking to establish themselves here.