Fundamental developments such as globalisation, informationalisation, and European integration lead to increased competition and interaction among metropolitan regions in search for mobile investment and trade. Next to the 'traditional' location factors and quality-of-life factors that determine the quality of the business environment, the ability of the metropolitan region to anticipate, respond to, and cope with internal and external changes is increasingly getting attention. This paper is based on the results of an international comparative investigation. The objective of the investigation is to gain insight into the use of organising capacity of eight metropolitan regions in Europe. The investigation is based on the analysis of fifteen major projects in eight European cities. Eight out of these fifteen projects have been included in this paper, one for each city. The projects have been analysed according to a specially developed theoretical framework. Organising capacity is closely bound up with strategic networks (public, private, and mixed networks), leadership, spatioeconomic conditions, vision and strategy, and political and societal support. The aim in this paper is to determine the contribution of these elements, separately and in combination, to the development process of the projects.