Madrid, leader in the Talent Map in Spain 2023

Madrid, leader in the Talent Map in Spain 2023


  • The Community of Madrid is positioned as a leader in the global indicator and as the main autonomous community in attracting talent, leading three of the six pillars
  • Our country exports almost four times more talent than it imports


The report Talent Map in Spain 2023, prepared by the COTEC Foundation and the Valencian Institute of Economic Research, its main objective is to offer a detailed x-ray of the capacity of each Spanish region to create, attract and retain talent.

To this end, the report is structured around six key pillars: facilitate, attract, grow, retain, technical capabilities and vocations, and knowledge. Each of these pillars is made up of a series of socioeconomic indicators that allow evaluating the performance of the autonomous communities in talent management. The Community of Madrid leads three of the six pillars (facilitate, attract and knowledge), surpassing Germany in four of them.

The report has established the ranking calculated as an average of the six key pillars and has introduced an additional perspective by comparing the results of the Spanish regions with those of Germany, a European benchmark in attracting and retaining talent at an international level, which allows contextualize and highlight the level of talent present in each region of our country.

According to the study, the United Kingdom is at the top as the most popular destination for Spanish emigrants, attracting 27.6 % of them, followed by France with 12.7 % and Germany with 8.1 %, being in mostly men, with higher education. Spain is shown as the largest exporter of qualified talent (43 % in 2023), importing 11.3 % in 2023, so our country exports almost four times more talent than it imports, which represents a challenge for development and the country's long-term competitiveness.

In turn, Morocco is the first country in terms of emigration to Spain, with 12.9 % of the total number of people who come to our country in search of new opportunities.

Pillars that measure the talent index in Spain

The six pillars that determine leadership are:


It refers to the areas of the regulatory and market environment, and the business environment and the labor market. Among the main indicators are spending on R&D, ICT infrastructure, the use of technology, the vulnerability of companies, etc. In this indicator, Madrid surpasses the German average.


Identify the elements that improve the ability to attract talent from other territories. It takes into consideration the areas of market opening (external and internal). It computes the level of foreign investment in sectors with high added value, as well as the presence of foreign companies, international students or the proportion of foreigners with higher education. In this indicator, the Community of Madrid is positioned as the main Autonomous Community in attracting talent.


Examines formal education and growth opportunities. This pillar includes spending on education, the results of the PISA report, the performance of university systems, training in working life or the risk of poverty rate. In this section, the leading territory is the Basque Country, closely followed by the Community of Madrid.


It takes into account all those factors that prevent talent from leaving Spain. In this sense, the indicator measures spending on health, social protection, environmental protection, pollution, public debt, the presence of infrastructure and health personnel, as well as the average time it takes to go to work. In this pillar, it is the region of Navarra that leads the retention of talent.

Technical capabilities and vocations

It refers to two areas: the ability of the educational system to adjust to the needs of companies and the employability of the workforce. It measures the profile of the active population, both its average or higher qualification, its productivity, employability or the correspondence between qualification and occupation. Catalonia and the Community of Madrid are leaders.


It evaluates regions according to their availability of the highest training and innovative capacities. Analyzes the presence of personnel capable of producing in the economy. It measures the population that has higher education, the number of researchers, the availability of scientists and engineers, the percentage of senior managers, high value-added exports, spending on innovative activities or intangible investment. Madrid also leads this indicator.

Strengths of the Community of Madrid

The report, in its summary section by Autonomous Communities, highlights a series of strengths of the Community of Madrid such as:

  • Leader in the global indicator and in half of its pillars.
  • The focus on continuous training (in ICT and in the workplace) guarantees opportunities for personal growth.
  • Solid position in knowledge, especially in impact on talent, where the variables of industrial property, investment in intangible assets and high added value exports stand out.

Graphic extracted from the Talent Map in Spain 2023, prepared by Cotec and the Valencian Institute of Economic Research (Ivie)

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