Looking for the happiest place on earth? Head straight for Denmark, which has yet again been named the world’s happiest country.
According to the 2013 World Happiness Report, published by Columbia University’s Earth Institute for the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network, the Danes are the happiest people in the world, followed by the Finns, the Norwegians and the Dutch. The 158-page report ranks over 150 countries according to a ’life evaluation score‘ that takes into account a variety of factors such as wealth, government corruption, political freedom and job security. Its sources include the Gallup World Poll (GWP), the World Values Survey (WVS), the European Values Survey (EVS), and theEuropean Social Survey (ESS).
Denmark also took the top spot in 2012, receiving the highest combined score on a scale from 0 to 10. This year, scores range from 2.936 (for last placed Togo) to 7.693 (Denmark, No1). Compared to last year, the 2013 World Happiness Report features more detailed analysis in a bid to guide policymakers to take the well-being of citizens into account when making decisions. Happy citizens make for better countries: The report found that happiness means that people live longer, have more productive lives, have higher earnings and are in general terms ‘better’ citizens.
Green means happy
The Danes have been ranked consistently as the world’s happiest people since as long ago as the early 1970s. More recently, in November 2011, they topped the happiness rankings published by the OECD. The ranking went hand in hand with a study from Green Growth Leaders, which showed that Copenhagen’s green ambitions have led to a significant improvement in the quality of life for the residents of the Danish capital. The rating illustrates an ongoing trend that the superior livability offered by Denmark and Copenhagen has a significant impact on its citizens