If a city wants to show the world its wealth, power and status, it builds a skyscraper.
And the coming decades will see even more cities across the globe competing with one another to build the tallest, most awe-inspiring skyscraper.
Some of these modern day Towers of Babel seem nothing more than a conspicuous display of wealth: completed in 2010 and standing at 2717 feet, Dubai's Burj Khalifa (pictured) cost a staggering $1.5 billion to build.
But for many other cities, tall buildings are needed to fill a shortage of affordable, innovative and sustainable housing.
Here, we feature the past 10 winners of the Emporis Skyscraper Awards. The awards, organized by Emporis, a global provider of building information, are the world's foremost for 'high-rise architecture' and recognize excellence in design and functionality.
—By Anmar Frangoul, Special to CNBC.com
Posted 8 Jan. 2014