These are the happiest countries in the world

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If you’re happy and you know it … you probably live in Finland.

Every year, the World Happiness Report ranks every country around the world in terms of how happy they are. The 2022 report marks the organization’s 10th year tracking global happiness. The organization looks at a variety of factors to determine its ranking, among them:

  • Life expectancy
  • GDP
  • Social support
  • Perception of corruption
  • Generosity
  • Freedoms (including social, religious, speech, etc.)

This is the fifth year in a row that Finland has come in as the No. 1 happiest country in the world. Perhaps usurpingly, European countries again dominate the top spots on the list:

  1. Finland
  2. Denmark
  3. Iceland
  4. Switzerland
  5. Netherlands

While the U.S. didn’t make the top five spots, it did come in at 16th out of 146 countries total. Last year, the U.S. ranked 19th. The report says that America saw a drop in income inequality and a rise institutional trust, although the country still scores lower in these categories than the happiest countries.

The World Happiness Report found that, overall, many countries with higher institutional trust and lower COVID-related deaths scored higher and increased their rankings compared to 2021. Still, the report noted that there was again a wide gap between the happiness scores of the most and least happy countries. The bottom five countries on the index were:

  1. Botswana
    143. Rwanda
    144. Zimbabwe
    145. Lebanon
    146. Afghanistan

You can find more about the organization’s methodology in the 2022 World Happiness Report.

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Kaitlyn Farley

Kaitlyn is MediaFeed’s senior editor. She is a graduate of Northwestern University’s Medill School of Journalism, specializing in social justice and investigative reporting. She has worked at various radio stations and newsrooms, covering higher-education, local politics, natural disasters and investigative and watchdog stories related to Title IX and transparency issues.