Finland is the world's happiest nation for sixth year running - as Nordic nations dominate while Britain falls

20 March 2023, 15:45 | Updated: 20 March 2023, 16:48

World's happiest nations revealed
Finland (left), Denmark (top right) and Iceland (bottom right) are the world's happiest nations according to a new report. Picture: Getty

By Chay Quinn

Finland is the world's happiest country for the sixth year running according to the World Happiness Report - with Nordic nations dominating the top positions.

The Northern European nations continued their prescience in the list of the happiest nations - but Britain dropped two places in the rankings as the UK slumped to 19th.

Denmark and Iceland round out the top three happy nations with Israel and the Netherlands taking fourth and fifth spot respectively.

The World Happiness Report is an annual survey of the residents of the world's nations which seeks to quantify the mood of the population.

The report is calculated using six key metrics including dystopia, perception of corruption, GDP-per-capita, healthy life expectancy and freedom to make life choices.

The release of the report each year coincides with the UN-recognised International Day of Happiness and this year marks a decade of the report's existences.

Scandinavian countries Sweden and Norway bookended the dominance which the region has in the top ranking with Switzerland and Luxembourg also occupying top-ten spots.

Tel Aviv, Israel
Israel was the only non-European nation in the top five countries in the Happiness Report. Picture: Getty

New Zealand is the only southern hemisphere nation in the top-10.

Taliban-run Afghanistan was the bottom nation for happiness in the year after it returned under the control of the repressive Islamic fundamentalists.

Corruption-ravaged Lebanon was second-last in the rankings and African nations Sierra Leone, Zimbabwe, Zambia, Tanzania, Malawi, Botswana and DR Congo also occupying the bottom-10.

The UK is sandwiched between the Czech Republic and Lithuania as it clings onto top-20 status following a year of political chaos and turmoil which has eroded trust in politicians according to pollsters - whereas, in the 2022 report, Britain occupied 17th spot.

The editor of the report John Helliwell told CNN that “benevolence to others, especially the helping of strangers, which went up dramatically in 2021, stayed high in 2022”.

He added that global happiness has not taken a hit in the three years of the Covid-19 pandemic and that life evaluations remain "resilient" despite the global health turmoil.

The top-20 of nations in the World Happiness Report:

1. Finland

2. Denmark

3. Iceland

4. Israel

5. Netherlands

6. Sweden

7. Norway

8. Switzerland

9. Luxembourg

10. New Zealand

11. Austria

12. Australia

13. Canada

14. Ireland

15. United States

16. Germany

17. Belgium

18. Czechia

19. United Kingdom

20. Lithuania

The bottom-20 of nations in the World Happiness Report:

117. Myanmar

118. Bangladesh

119. Gambia

120. Mali

121. Egypt

122. Togo

123. Jordan

124. Ethiopia

125. Liberia

126. India

127. Madagascar

128. Zambia

129. Tanzania

130. Comoros

131. Malawi

132. Botswana

133. DR Congo

134. Zimbabwe

135. Sierra Leone

136. Lebanon

137. Afghanistan

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