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Icelanders are one of the happiest nations of the world, UN report finds

By Staff

  • Life looks good Yet again the World Happiness Report finds that Icelanders are among the happiest people in the world. Photo/Stefán Karlsson

Icelanders continue to be one of the world’s happiest nations, according to the UN 2017 World Happiness Report (pdf). Norwegians are the happiest people in the world, followed closely by Danes, Icelanders and the Swiss. The report notes that the four nations are clustered so closely that the difference between them is statistically insignificant.

Read more: Iceland has the second highest quality of life among OECD countries

Happiness is strongly correlated with the quality of life, the report finds. Six factors, in particular, seem to predict happiness: GDP per capita, healthy years of life expectancy, social support (as measured by having someone to count on in times of trouble), trust (as measured by a perceived absence of corruption in government and business), perceived freedom to make life decisions and generosity (as measured by recent donations).

The six top spots on the list are all occupied by European nations. Finns and the Dutch come in fifth and sixth spot, followed by Canadians, New Zealanders and Australians in spots seven through nine. Swedes are the tenth happiest nation in the world. Americans come in fourteenth and the people of the UK in nineteenth spot.

African nations occupy the bottom spots on the list, with the lowest level of happiness in the Central African Republic.

 

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