Canada is reported to be among the happiest countries in the world.

In the World Happiness Report 2022 by the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network, Canada placed 15th out of 146 countries in the ranking of the world’s happiest countries.

The list of the top 15 happiest countries in the world includes:

  1. Finland
  2. Denmark
  3. Iceland
  4. Switzerland
  5. Netherlands
  6. Luxembourg
  7. Sweden
  8. Norway
  9. Israel
  10. New Zealand
  11. Austria
  12. Australia
  13. Ireland
  14. Germany
  15. Canada

For the fifth year in a row, Finland continues to place first as the happiest country in the world, with a score significantly ahead of other countries in the top 10. Denmark also continues to occupy second place, with Iceland up from fourth place last year to third place this year.

The 10th anniversary of the happiness report was written as the world is entering the third year of the COVID-19 pandemic and places a triple focus on how individuals and countries are managing in the face of the pandemic, as well as looks ahead to how the science of well-being and countries are likely to evolve in the future.

The UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network composed its list using data from the Gallup World Poll surveys from 2019 to 2021.

The poll asked questions related to experiences of life being in balance, feeling at peace with life, feeling calm throughout the day, preferring a calm to an exciting life and focusing on caring for others or self.

The report also looked at the following six variables to make its list: Log GDP per capita, social support, healthy life expectancy at birth, freedom to make life choices, generosity and perception of corruption.

Among the six variables, the report revealed that overall, there has been general growth in real GDP and per capita and healthy life expectancy, generally declining perceptions of corruption and freedom and fairly constant levels of social support.

The report also revealed several findings on how the world is responding to COVID-19.

While worry and stress levels are reported to have risen by 8% in 2020 and 4% in 2021 across the world compared with pre-pandemic levels, there has been a global upsurge in benevolence in 2021. In every global region, the report states that there have been significant increases in the proportion of people who donate money to charity, help strangers and do voluntary work.

Experiences of balance, peace and calm are also more prevalent in Western countries like Canada and the United States, which experienced the highest levels of satisfaction. Both balance and peace were found to strongly contribute to a satisfying life in all regions across the world.

Overall, interest in happiness and subject well-being have risen sharply, while references to income and GDP have fallen and become less common than references to happiness, which the UN Sustainable Development Solutions Network deems encouraging long-term trends.

For many countries, the role and prominence of happiness and its related concepts and terminology are on the rise, which is a promising outlook for all who aspire to be happier.

Published on May 27, 2022.