There has been a metamorphosis in the powers of attraction of different European cities for migrants within Europe in the past three decades. The reasons for migration of different groups of the population have changed significantly. Economic factors were largely important at the beginning of the period encouraging shifts of workers from poorer southern areas of Europe to the richer industrial cities of the north where the demand for labour could not be met by internal population growth.It was largely the unskilled and underemployed who made up the bulk of these migrants. During the 1970s with the change in economic fortunes of the industrialised northern cities this immigration slowed.Environmental factors started to play a larger part in migration decisions. The largercities of northern Europe with high congestion and pollution costs, ageing city centres and industrial dereliction lost out to medium sized towns with easier access and more pleasant environments. Firms chose these locations for expansion and workers relocated. People, however, were still following jobs. The most recent observation of significance to European cities has been a movement of the most highly skilled technical and professional workers away from large northern European cities to Mediterranean and Alpine cities. These groups of migrants have responded to the perceived advantages of climate, leisure opportunities, reduced pollution and congestion levels and the physical attractiveness of these urban centres. The numbers involved in this type of migration are small but the impact could be large and is likely to grow. For the first time in Europe economic activity is following the migration rather than initiating it. Cities are responding to this movement by vying to attract these particular groups , so vital to the economic future of the city in an age of growing tertiary activity, with shop window techniques. With the advent of the Single European Market at the end of 1992 remaining restrictions on inter-country migration within the European Community will be removed, and a common standard accepted for professional qualifications throughout the area. It is predicted that the search for better living conditions and the fulfillment of life-sylle dreams will result in an increased movement of the well qualified young towards the'high amenity' cities of Europe. This will have a profound effect on both the losers and the gainers,, changing the fortunes of cities, and possibly resulting in a response from cities in their priorities. It may be perceived as better to spend to attract the rich than to increase the welfare of the poor; better to become an attractive advertising image than a real place in which to live and work. There is evidence that this is already happening in some cities.