Singapore has been ranked the second happiest country in Asia, just behind Taiwan.
The city-state is ranked 34th globally in the World Happiness Report by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network.
Once again, Finland takes the top spot as the happiest country in the world. Rounding out the rest of the top ten are countries that have consistently ranked among the happiest, according to a media release on Wednesday, March 20. They are in order: Denmark, Norway, Iceland, Netherlands, Switzerland, Sweden, New Zealand, Canada and Austria.
This year’s happiness report focuses on happiness and the community: how happiness has evolved over the past dozen years, with a focus on the technologies, social norms, conflicts and government policies that have driven those changes.
Factoring in population growth, world happiness has fallen in recent years, driven by the sustained downward trend in India. As for emotions, there has been a widespread recent upward trend in negative affect, comprising worry, sadness and anger. This is especially marked in Asia and Africa, and more recently elsewhere.
“The world is a rapidly changing place,” said Professor John Helliwell, co-editor of the report. “How communities interact with each other whether in schools, workplaces, neighborhoods or on social media has profound effects on world happiness.”
The World Happiness Report 2019 ranks 156 countries by how happy their citizens perceive themselves to be, according to their evaluations of their own lives.
“We are living a moment of transition to a new age and this generates a sense of uncertainty,” said Andrea Illy, Chairman of illycaffè and Member of the Board of Fondazione Ernesto Illy. “Social happiness is therefore even more relevant, in order to give a positive perspective and outlook for the present and for the future.”