And, The Happiest Country In The World Is...

Photographed by Maia Harms.
The United Nations has just released the latest World Happiness Report, and it includes a ranking of every country based on its level of happiness. Spoiler alert: The United States didn't come close to nabbing the top spot — which, of course, makes us very unhappy. 

Instead, the top spot — a.k.a. the happiest country in the world — goes to Switzerland, land of fancy banks, the Matterhorn, and some damn fine chocolate. 

The Sustainable Development Solutions Network conducted the survey using data from the Gallup World Poll. In addition to that data, a nation's real GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, levels of corruption, and access to social freedoms were also taken into account. At the bottom of the list were Togo, Burundi, Syria, Benin, and Rwanda. 

Of the happiest countries, Switzerland was followed by second-place Iceland, then Denmark, and Norway. Canada achieved the fifth spot, while the United States came in at 15, sandwiched between Mexico at 14 and Brazil in 16th place.

The happiness index is designed to encourage policymakers to consider the happiness of its citizens more. Until that happens, however, a trip to Scandinavia (or at least up over the Canadian border) might be in order. See the full list of the top 20 happiest countries below. (BBC)


1. Switzerland
2. Iceland
3. Denmark
4. Norway
5. Canada
6. Finland
7. Netherlands
8. Sweden
9. New Zealand
10. Australia
11. Israel
12. Costa Rica
13. Austria
14. Mexico
15. United States
16. Brazil
17. Luxembourg
18. Ireland
19. Belgium
20. United Arab Emirates
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