Malmö (and the region) has a significant rank among European cities in terms of their economic importance. The area is characterised by ESPON as ‘capital-mega city’ with very high share of high level functions in finance, business and non-market service. With its economic profile, Malmö area belongs to a rather exclusive club of European cities. Placed together with cities such as Madrid, Berlin, Rome, Milano or some Dutch cities, this represents the second level after Paris and London.
Every Swedish county is managed by a county administrative board, which represents the national government, ensuring that governmental policies and national goals are implemented in the county. All the county boards have similar tasks; however, these might slightly vary depending on the regional context. One of the main responsibilities of the county administrative board, in collaboration with local communities, is to encourage and develop the planning process of the future society. The development of future cities, towns and rural areas should be done in close collaboration with citizens living in the area. Although social services are managed by municipalities, the County Administrative Board of Skåne has an important role in creating good and secure living conditions, as well as a sustainable living environment.
It is not a surprise that Sweden has an exclusive situation on the World Value Survey’ graph both regarding trust in people (among top countries with Ireland, Luxemburg and Switzerland, outdone only by Denmark and Finland that have better positions) and institutions (actually Sweden is the second country after Denmark). It is also widely known that Sweden has a long tradition of volunteering and active citizenship among its population.
Parallel to economic growth, employment was characterised by significant growth in the last years as well, which is partly due to the fact that the share of population with tertiary education is very high in comparison with the European average. Despite the massive growth in employment and the fact that it has already recovered from the crisis, unemployment remains at a high level in Skåne. Unemployment has doubled since the financial crisis of 2008 and is at a significantly higher level than in 2009 - the worst year of the crisis. Skåne is still among the Swedish counties with the highest unemployment rates.
Although social exclusion represent a very low risk in comparison with the European average, the county's labour market faces a number of challenges (which is of course dramatically increased by the recent refugee crisis): nearly 30 percent of the unemployed have no high school education, and half of these are born outside Europe. Youth unemployment is a key issue in Skåne.