Future Atlas

Our interactive map is based on 29 indicators in the areas of demographics (ex. birth), prosperity and socio-economic status (ex. number of welfare recipients), labor market (ex. proportion of employment in services) and competition and innovation (ex. number of patent applications). Researchers use these indicators to create a ranking based on regions. Additionally, eight categories describe their sustainability from high (best opportunities) to medium (balanced opportunity and risk) to low (very high risk).

Related Articles

Friedrichshafen aerial panorama at night. Friedrichshafen, Baden-Wurttemberg, Germany.

Future Atlas

Lakeside Idyll Hides Industrial Hothouse

Friedrichshafen, which rests on the shores of Lake Constance, reaps the benefits of strong industrial roots in aerospace, motors and gears. But the area, though close to the Swiss and Austrian borders, is flying under the radar as a business location.

Ein Fahnenschwinger wirbelt am 23.06.2013 beim Hessentagsumzug in Kassel (Hessen) die hessische Fahne vor der Kunsthalle Fridericianum. Foto: Uwe Zucchi/dpa +++(c) dpa - Bildfunk+++

Future Atlas 2016 - City Ranking

In Faraway Corner, a Late Bloomer

It took the town of Kassel in central Germany 20 long years for the good times to get going. Now it is booming, home to international firms from K+S to SMA Solar. Its only headache is Volkswagen.


A Small Town in Germany

Researchers have found that the town of Miltenberg is highly typical in statistical terms. But all the averages the town boasts illustrate the roots of Germany’s economic success.

bayer-leverkusen oliver berg dpa

Future Atlas 2016 - CITY RANKING

The Rhineland Paradox

Bayer has flourished in Leverkusen, but the city that is so tightly linked to the chemicals giant is almost bankrupt. How could that happen?

Ruhrschnellweg, die Autobahn A 40, in Essen am Abend, Deutschland, Nordrhein-Westfalen, Ruhrgebiet, Essen | Ruhrschnellweg, highway A40 in Essen downtown in the evening, Germany, North Rhine-Westphalia, Ruhr Area, Essen [ Rechtehinweis: Verwendung weltweit, usage worldwide ]


Ruhr: A Region Divided

Contrary to popular opinion elsewhere in Germany, the industrial Ruhr area is not the desperate region many believe it to be. A study on local potential shows the area is splitting in half, with the gap between the successful and the struggling growing.

Future Atlas 2016 - City Ranking

Germany’s Digital Oases

German cities with the best potential are those embracing the digital revolution, according to a survey of 402 regions obtained by Handelsblatt. Munich leads the pack, followed by smaller cities like Stuttgart, Frankfurt and Hamburg. Berlin, a magnet but relatively poor, is gaining.


Since 2004, the research institute Prognos has measured the sustainability and future potential of 402 German counties and cities every three years. Find out how the institute leads the way. Read more

In addition, Prognos 2016, together with a specialized media evaluation index group, created a digitization compass which indicates the strength of regions in the field of information technology in six categories. Indicators for this ranking are: the number of jobs in digitization in the region; proportion of digital experts compared to the total number of employees; and the number of startups in the IT sector.