Denmark ‘the world’s happiest country', says report

Denmark overtook Switzerland as the world’s happiest place, according to a report that urged nations regardless of wealth to tackle inequality and protect the environment.

Denmark ‘the world’s happiest country', says report

The report, prepared by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN) and the Earth Institute at Columbia University, showed Syria, Afghanistan and eight sub-Saharan countries as the 10 least happy places on earth to live.

The top 10 this year were Denmark, Switzerland, Iceland, Norway, Finland, Canada, Netherlands, New Zealand, Australia, and Sweden. Denmark was in third place last year, behind Switzerland and Iceland. Ireland came in at 19 with the UK 23, France 32, and Italy at 50. The bottom 10 were Madagascar, Tanzania, Liberia, Guinea, Rwanda, Benin, Afghanistan, Togo, Syria and Burundi.

“There is a very strong message for my country, the United States, which is very rich, has gotten a lot richer over the last 50 years, but has gotten no happier,” said Professor Jeffrey Sachs, head of the SDSN and special advisor to U.N. Secretary General Ban Ki-moon.

The 2016 survey showed that three countries in particular, Ireland, Iceland and Japan, were able to maintain their happiness levels despite economic crises.

Happy ranking

1. Denmark

2. Switzerland

3. Iceland

4. Norway

5. Finland

6. Canada

7. Netherlands

8. New Zealand

9. Australia

10. Sweden

11. Israel

12. Austria

13. United States

14. Costa Rica

15. Puerto Rico

16. Germany

17. Brazil

18. Belgium

19. Ireland

20. Luxembourg

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