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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Insights - How to rank countries by happiness?

CEO Insights

How to rank countries by happiness?

Happy People Profile

According to the 2024 Global Happiness Report, a comprehensive survey on global happiness levels released in January by CEOWORLD magazine, Finland and Denmark are the happiest countries, while Eswatini and Lesotho are the unhappiest. However, before you consider moving to Northern Europe, you might want to know more about how the experts determine happiness levels.

What is the Global Happiness Report measuring?

Many people believe that countries become happier as their GDP increases. However, this is not always the case. The United States, despite being wealthy, has seen a decline in happiness among its citizens for various reasons and is ranked No. 15. Additionally, individuals in certain high-GDP European countries, such as Brazil (ranked No. 49; GDP: $1.92 trillion) and Japan (ranked No. 47; GDP: $4.232 trillion), report lower life satisfaction compared to those in lower-GDP countries, such as Costa Rica (ranked No. 23; GDP: $69.24 billion) and Chile (ranked No. 35; GDP: $301 billion). These findings raise questions about why this is occurring.

Psychological well-being includes having a positive outlook on life and feelings of purpose and accomplishment. Health encompasses having enough energy to carry out daily activities. Time balance is about finding enjoyment and having a sense of leisure without feeling rushed. Community involves feeling a sense of belonging, participating in volunteer activities, and feeling safe.

Social support includes feeling satisfied with relationships with friends and family, loved and not lonely. Education, arts, and culture involve having access to diverse cultural and educational events. The environment includes having access to nature, avoiding pollution, and promoting conservation efforts. Governance is about having trust in government, a sense of transparency and competency. Material well-being covers financial security and meeting basic needs. Work includes having fair compensation, autonomy and productivity.

The 2024 Global Happiness Report is a comprehensive survey instrument that assesses happiness, well-being, sustainability, and resilience. CEOWORLD magazine developed the Global Happiness Index to provide a survey instrument to community organizers, researchers, and others seeking a subjective well-being index and data. This instrument can be used to measure satisfaction with life and the conditions of life. It can also be used to define income inequality, trust in government, a sense of community, and other aspects of well-being within specific population demographics.

Global Happiness Index measures life satisfaction, the feeling of happiness, and other happiness domains: psychological well-being, health, time balance, community, social support, education, arts and culture, environment, governance, material well-being, and work. The qualities measured in the domains are as follows:

The Global Happiness Index is a tool for the use of researchers, community organizers and policymakers seeking to understand and enhance individual happiness, community well-being, social justice, economic equality, and environmental sustainability.


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CEOWORLD magazine - Latest - CEO Insights - How to rank countries by happiness?
Nikolas Anderson
Associate Editor at CEOWORLD Magazine. I report on CEOs, boards, corporate governance, what’s going on inside the world’s biggest companies, and the future of work. Previously, I was Senior Energy Correspondent covering oil and gas companies, G-20 energy policy, and the global transition towards cleaner fuels.