The main functions are:
- RESIDENTIAL provide places for people to live.
- POLITICAL – ADMINISTRATIVE cities have local authority, regional or national offices and institutions. Some cities like Brussels or New York have the seats of international institutions such as UE or UN.
- COMMERCIAL Shopping centers and distribution markets have a big impact in cities. Banks and other financial institutions have their headquarters in capital cities or international business centers such as New York, London or Tokyo.
- INDUSTRIAL Factories and business parks are located near cities and communication networks. There are large industrial cities like Shanghai in China.
- SERVICES are located mainly in cities. Public services such as schools, hospitals and libraries can be found in cities.
- CULTURAL some cities have a cultural background. It can be based on education like the medieval Universities of Cambridge or Salamanca or religious pilgrimages such as Jerusalem, Rome or Mecca.
- TOURIST cultural attractions such as museums or monuments as well as picturesque places relate to cities.