I’ve just read this article in Forbes magazine about a report of the World’s happiest places. It’s well worth a read and gives some insights into what makes people happy.
But before we talk about that, here’s a list of the top 10 countries.
Top 10 happiest countries
- New Zealand
The Independent newspaper discussed another report from the University of Leicester in the UK a couple of years ago that drew similar conclusions, so maybe these countries do have something.
For me as a Brit living in Malmo, Sweden, I can definitely see that Swedes have a very good life compared to us British. But equally the country is not perfect. In fact, some the happiest countries above are also quite high in this list from Wikipedia of the countries with the highest suicide rate.
That aside, what does the report have to say on what makes people happy?
What makes people happy?
Some of the suggested factors are:
- Family, social and community networks
- Work-life balance
- High employment rates
A couple of people commented in the blog that other reasons may be access to nature and wilderness, education and a good health system.
I agree with all the above, but I also think there is one more vital factor.
Cities for People = Happy Country?
In today’s world, over 50% of people live in cities. So we need great cities for people to be happy. Cities that enable people to be wealthy, have great jobs and great community networks. Cities that have good eduction systems, great health services and access to nature.
See my article on what I think we need to build to make a city for people.
Of course, it is not all about cities. There are many other aspects of a country that make a difference. But I do think cities for people are crucial.
What do you think?