Western Europe and Scandinavia the happiest in the world
Nations in Western Europe and Scandinavia are the happiest in the world, according to a new report from the United Nations.
According to the World Happiness Report 2013, published by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, Denmark is the world’s happiest country, followed by Norway, Switzerland, the Netherlands and Sweden.
The survey, compiled by academics from the London School of Economic, Columbia University, the Vancouver School of Economics and the Canadian Institute for Advanced Research, is the second of its kind – following the publication of the inaugural report in 2012. The report drew on data from Gallup World Polls, carried out between 2010 and 2012, for its findings.
The study, which took factors such as life expectancy, mental health, social support, and the freedom to make life choices into account in assessing levels of happiness also found Togo to be the world’s least happy nation, followed by Benin, the Central African Republic, Burundi and Rwanda.
Mental health is the single most important contributor to personal unhappiness, outstripping other key factors such as physical illness, poor income and unemployment.