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A map of the world's happiest countries

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The UK is the 23rd happiest country in the world, according to an international report.

The World Happiness Report 2016, which surveyed 157 countries, aims "to survey the scientific underpinnings of measuring and understanding subjective well-being".

It does so by employing polling data on happiness as well as key economic, health and development markers, and analysis from experts across fields including economics, psychology, survey analysis, national statistics, health, public policy.

The report found that the top 10 countries were:

All small or medium-sized western industrial countries, of which seven are in Western Europe.

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Meanwhile the bottom 10 countries for happiness were all largely defined by poor scores in a number of specific criteria, namely:

  • GDP per capita
  • healthy life expectancy
  • social support
  • freedom
  • generosity
  • absence of corruption
  • violence
  • disease

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Here's the global picture (countries in black weren't surveyed in the report):

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Four national governments - Bhutan, Ecuador, United Arab Emirates and Venezuela - have appointed ministers of happiness responsible for coordinating their national efforts.


More: Where the world's happiest employees live

More: These are the ten universities in the UK with the happiest students

More: Welcome to the happiest country in the world

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