This year’s World Happiness Report shines a light on the countries where people feel they live their best possible lives.
The first World Happiness Report was published in April 2012. Its central purpose was to survey the science of measuring and understanding subjective well-being. Since then the project has come a long way and interest, data and research continue to increase. Happiness is more than just a feeling; it’s considered a proper measure of social progress and the goal of public policy.
This fifth World Happiness Report gives special attention to the social foundations of happiness for individuals and nations. The report is based on an annual survey of 1,000 people in more than 150 countries. The survey simply asks them to rank, on a scale of zero to 10, whether they are living their best possible life. Researchers then use six measures to try to understand these results: gross domestic product per capita, healthy life expectancy, social support (friends or family), generosity, freedom to make decisions, and trust as measured by absence of corruption in government and business.
In comparison to last year’s report, the top 10 countries are the same ones. But there has been some shuffling of places. Norway moved up three places and has the top position, although the difference between the top four countries is not statistically significant. The Netherlands holds a good 6th place. Germany and the United Kingdom are placed a bit lower at numbers 16 and 19 respectively. Not a bad position, considering a total of 155 countries were investigated.
Website: World Happiness Report
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