Top 20 Cities For STEM Job Growth Announced In RCLCO’S 2023 Annual STEM Index

Career Climbers / 20th November 2023

Leading real estate advisory firm RCLCO Real Estate Consulting has announced the results of their 2023 STEM Job Growth Index (STEMdex), which projects which metropolitan areas will have the strongest outlook for growth in STEM jobs. Published annually since 2016, with the support of light industrial and office investment management firm CapRidge Partners, the STEMdex tracks and projects STEM job growth trends across the country by analyzing the economies of the largest metropolitan areas to understand which regions are attracting the jobs and employees of the future. Read the full report online.

“STEM jobs are characterized by a highly educated workforce and are some of the highest paying, most economically productive jobs in any market,” said Gregg Logan, Managing Director of RCLCO. “Their importance in the economy cannot be overstated, and our STEMdex, now in its seventh year of publication, aims to highlight the markets that currently feature strong levels of industry employment and those likely to see strong growth in the future. We find the STEMdex is an easy and  intuitive way for people to understand the trends in employment and housing that STEM jobs will bring to these cities in the coming years.” 

The index’s analysis focuses on metrics in four major areas RCLCO finds to be paramount to the growth of STEM jobs: STEM Trends/Economic Factors, Workforce Quality, Quality of Life/Health, and Business Climate. In total, RCLCO identified and weighted 25 different indicators they believe best characterize the four major categories and can quantify their impact on the STEM job market.  Some of the highlights of this year’s list include:

  • Austin, TX, remains in the top spot for the second year in a row and fifth time in seven years.
  • Richmond, VA, was the only new entrant to the Top 20 of the STEMdex this year.
  • Of the largest fifty MSA’s, San Jose has the highest concentration of STEM jobs today.
  • The top 5 most heavily concentrated STEM markets – San JoseWashington DCSan FranciscoAustin, and Boston all rank within the top 10 for projected future job growth.

Three MSAs in California made this year’s list, while Texas and North Carolina both saw two cities in the top 20; no other state had more than one city in the 2023 list. 2023’s results are fairly consistent from 2022 with some notable moves: New York City, which ranked #13 last year, dropped off the list entirely, while Orlando and Nashville both moved up the list significantly.  40% of the cities on the list maintained their precise ranking from 2022 – including AtlantaAustinBostonCharlottePortlandSan DiegoSan Francisco and San Jose.

The top 20 cities include:






Austin, TX


Minneapolis, MN


Denver, CO


Salt Lake City, UT


Seattle, WA


Orlando, FL


Raleigh, NC


Charlotte, NC


Washington, DC


Atlanta, GA


San Francisco, CA


Nashville, TN


Portland, OR


San Diego, CA


San Jose, CA


Richmond, VA


Boston, MA


Baltimore, MD


Dallas, TX


Philadelphia, PA

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