Top 12 Highest-Paying Metro Areas for Data Scientists

Employers really need data scientists—and will pay top dollar for them. But which metro areas are offering the highest compensation for data scientists?

For an answer, we can turn to Blind, which surveys (anonymous) technologists on a range of issues. The company recently broke down the 50 top-paying cities for data scientists; in addition to salary, it also analyzed overall compensation (i.e., stock and bonuses). Here are the top 12 cities: 

Blind previously ran a similar study with software engineers, and many of the top-paying cities on that list also appear on the data-scientist one. There’s a simple reason for that: Cities such as Menlo Park, Los Gatos, Mountain View, and Cupertino are home to some of the biggest tech companies in the world (Meta, Netflix, Google, and Apple, in the case of those four), all of which have the budget, benefits, and perks to attract the best of the best.

But Silicon Valley doesn’t wholly dominate the discussion: Cambridge, San Francisco, Los Angeles, Boulder, and Redmond also make strong appearances among these top 12 cities for data scientists. These cities host not only tech giants, but also world-class companies with similarly ample resources.

According to Emsi Burning Glass, which collects and analyzes millions of job postings from across the country, the median salary for a data scientist currently stands at $112,359, with that number only rising with skills and experience. “Fluency in programming languages like Python, R, SQL, Java and knowledge of Python libraries like Scikit-learn, TensorFlow, and PyTorch convey to the recruiter that you have the competencies to get the job done,” Sachin Gupta, co-founder and CEO at developer hiring platform HackerEarth, recently told Dice. 

As shown by Blind’s list, working in a major tech hub can boost your salary, as well, since multiple companies with lots of money are competing for the same pool of talent. But in places such as Silicon Valley and San Francisco, that higher compensation comes a higher cost of living.