The World’s Happiest Country Is Norway.
On World Happiness Day, March 20th, the United Nation’s World Happiness Report 2017, was published by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network, supported by a generous three-year grant from the Ernesto Illy Foundation. This year’s report emphasises the importance of the social foundations of happiness. This can be seen by comparing the life experiences between the top and bottom ten countries in this year’s happiness rankings. There is a four-point happiness gap between the two groups of countries, of which three-quarters is explained by the six variables, half due to differences in having someone to count on, generosity, a sense of freedom, and freedom from corruption. The other half of the explained difference is attributed to GDP per capita and healthy life expectancy, both of which, as the report explains, also depend importantly on the social context. However 80% of the variance of happiness across the world occurs within countries. In richer countries, the within-country differences are not mainly explained by income inequality, but by differences in mental health, physical health and personal relationships: the biggest single source of misery is mental illness. Income differences matter more in poorer countries, but even their mental illness is a major source of misery. Work is also a major factor affecting happiness. Unemployment causes a major fall in happiness, and even for those in work the quality of work can cause major variations in happiness. All of the countries in the top ten have high values in all six of the key variables used to explain happiness differences among countries and through time – income, healthy life expectancy, having someone to count on in times of trouble, generosity, freedom and trust, with the latter measured by the absence of corruption in business and government.
Read Article Here: