The population share of high-skilled workers has a positive effect on regional development. The higher the qualification in a region, the higher the value added, productivity and wages.  Although the proportion of high-skilled people in Mannheim is above the national average, it is significantly lower than in most neighbouring cities such as Heidelberg, Karlsruhe or Darmstadt.  But how can the city of Mannheim succeed in motivating highly qualified people to move in? To what extent can the comparatively low proportion of high-skilled people in Mannheim be explained by "hard" location factors such as the economic structure? What role do "softer" factors such as cultural amenities or the image of the city play? In order to answer these questions, the project analyzed the determinants of the regional share of highly qualified workers based on secondary data. In addition, an experimental survey was used to let respondents decide between hypothetical job offers that differ in terms of randomly combined job and location characteristics. It was shown that an economic structure geared to qualification-intensive services and a strong university location are important prerequisites for the influx of highly qualified people. Furthermore, the attractiveness of a city for highly qualified people relative to less qualified people increases with the quality of the cultural amenities, the quality of the local infrastructure, the region’s family friendliness as well as ecological quality. Improvements in these areas can thus encourage the influx of highly qualified people. However, it has also been shown that Mannheim's advantages in terms of infrastructure and cultural amenities are underestimated and that improved perception can therefore also enhance the attractiveness of the location for this group of people.