Norway ranked 1 in World Happiness Report, India slips to 122

Mar 21, 2017 11:00 IST

 World Happiness Report 2017 Norway beat its close competitors, Denmark and Iceland to clinch the 1st place in the World Happiness Report 2017. The country was ranked fourth in 2016’s report.

The top five in the list included Norway at rank 1 followed by Denmark at rank 2, Iceland at 3 and Switzerland and Finland at rank 4 and 5 respectively. All the top countries ranked highly on the main factors that are found to support happiness like caring, freedom, generosity, honesty, health, good governance and income.

The averages of the top countries are so close that small changes can cause the rankings to change every year.

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Key Highlights

• Norway was ranked one in spite of the weakening of oil prices.

• The top ten was rounded up with Netherlands at the 6th position, Canada at 7, New Zealand at 8 and Australia and Sweden at 9 and 10 positions respectively.

• All the countries in the top ten were found to have high values in all six key variables used to define happiness differences among countries including income, freedom, life expectancy, generosity, social support and the absence of corruption in business and government.

• Though money is not the only measure to define happiness, all the countries featured in the top 10 are affluent and developed.

• The differences in happiness levels in the wealthier countries, in fact, had a lot to do with differences in physical and mental health and personal relationships.

• The countries that ranked the lowest on the list include Rwanda at 151, Syria at 152, Tanzania at 153, Burundi at 154 and the Central African Republic at 155.


 Norway Happiest Country

Following is the list of top 20 and bottom 20 nations in the World Happiness Report:

           Happiest countries

         Least Happy countries

        1.   Norway (7.537)

     136.  Malawi (3.970)

        2.   Denmark (7.522)

     137.   Chad (3.936)

        3.   Iceland (7.504)

     138.   Zimbabwe (3.875)

        4.   Switzerland (7.494)

     139.   Lesotho (3.808)

        5.    Finland (7.469)

     140.   Angola (3.795)

        6.    Netherlands (7.377)

     141.   Afghanistan (3.794)

        7.    Canada (7.316)

     142.   Botswana (3.766)

        8.    New Zealand (7.314)

     143.   Benin (3.657)

        9.    Australia (7.284)

     144.   Madagascar (3.644)

       10.  Sweden (7.284)

     145.   Haiti (3.603)

       11.  Israel (7.213)

     146.   Yemen (3.593)

       12.  Costa Rica (7.079)

     147.   South Sudan (3.591)

       13.  Austria (7.006)

     148.   Liberia (3.533)

       14.  United States (6.993)

     149.   Guinea (3.507)

       15.  Ireland (6.977)

     150.   Togo (3.495)

       16.  Germany (6.951)

     151.   Rwanda (3.471)

       17.  Belgium (6.891)

     152.   Syria (3.462)

       18   Luxembourg (6.863)

     153.  Tanzania (3.349)

       19.  United Kingdom (6.714)

     154.  Burundi (2.905)

       20.  Chile (6.652)

     155.  Central African Republic (2.693)

India’s rank lower than its SAARC contemporaries

• India was ranked 122 in the happiness report, much behind most of the SAARC nations including Pakistan and Nepal. India’s rank was even lower than its previous rank of 118 in 2016.

• While Pakistan was ranked 80, Nepal stood at 99, Bhutan at 97, Bangladesh at 110 and Sri Lanka at 120.

• Maldives didn’t figure at all in the list and only the war-torn Afghanistan was ranked lower than India at 141.

• Another India’s neighbour, China, which has shown tremendous growth in its economy lately, featured very low on the list at 79. The report reveals that people in China are not any happier than they were 25 years ago.

• The United States also slipped to number 14 due to factors like less social support and increasing corruption rate.

The World Happiness report was released by the United Nations at an event on 20 March 2017, celebrating the International Day of Happiness. It is the fifth such report since the release of the first one in 2012.

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