Finland continues to be the country with the happiest people in the world. On the International Happiness Day, the UN’s seventh annual World Happiness Report ranking the countries of the world on “how happy their citizens perceive themselves to be”, has given the highest credit to Finland once again.
The Nordic nation received the accolade for the second year in a row in the annual survey of global happiness from the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network, thus outranking the rest of 155 countries in the 2019 report, released on Wednesday.
The 2019 world happiest top ten countries are: Finland, Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, New Zealand, Canada, and Austria. In this year’s ranking, each of the Nordic countries fared well, with Austria moving up the list to break into the top ten and replace Australia.
The survey ranks Romania 48th out in 156. On the opposite side, the less happy countries worldwide are in Africa, with South Sudan the least happy.
The report states that global data on national happiness and evidence from the emerging science of happiness shows that “the quality of people’s lives can be coherently, reliably, and validly assessed by a variety of subjective well-being measures, collectively referred to as ‘happiness.'”
The annual report is based on survey results from the preceding three years, although the surveys are not arranged in every country in the assessment on an annual basis.
The 2019 report focuses on happiness and the community: how happiness has evolved over the past dozen years, with a focus on the technologies, social norms, conflicts and government policies that have driven those changes. Special chapters focus on generosity and prosocial behaviour, the effects of happiness on voting behavior, big data, and the happiness effects of internet use and addictions.
“The world is a rapidly changing place,” said Professor John Helliwell, co-editor of the report. “How communities interact with each other whether in schools, workplaces, neighborhoods or on social media has profound effects on world happiness.”
“We are living a moment of transition to a new age and this generates a sense of uncertainty. Social happiness is therefore even more relevant, in order to give a positive perspective and outlook for the present and for the future,” said Andrea Illy, Chairman of illycaffè and Member of the Board of Fondazione Ernesto Illy.