This seminar will consider the rise of global cities; what makes them successful and how other cities can benefit from it to boost their global relevance. In particular; the role of institutional real estate investors and developers will be examined. The opening comments will describe how power shifts and new forms of urban competiveness are radically changing the world order of cities and redefining the nature of the ‘global city’. New work on the national and global systems of cities and clusters within them will show the different pathways to success that are emerging as cities major variously on innovation; quality; accessibility; and soft power and industry specialisations. The latest table of direct property investment volumes for the top 30 cities will illustrate the market response; the enduring popularity of some cities and the change tone of investment destinations as urbanisation and globalisation continue.