March 20th is observed by all member states of the United Nations as the International Day of Happiness.

The United Nations ranks 155 countries by their happiness levels, published today at an event at the United Nations Headquarters in New York and shared with the world. In 2017, Norway has been named the Happiest Country in the World. Canada has been ranked the 7th happiest country in the world!

international-day-of-happiness

The key findings from the 2017 World Happiness Report are:

* Norway tops the global happiness rankings

* Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland & Finland complete the top 5

* Happiness is both social and personal

* People in China are no happier than 25 years ago

* Happiness has fallen in America

On happiness being both social and personal:
This year’s report emphasizes the importance of the social foundations of happiness. This can be seen by comparing the life experiences between the top and bottom ten countries. There is major happiness gap between the two groups of countries, of which three-quarters is explained by the six variables, half due to differences in having someone to count on, generosity, a sense of freedom, and freedom from corruption. The other half of the explained difference is attributed to GDP per capita and healthy life expectancy, both of which also depend importantly on the social context.

On the key determinants of happiness and misery
Variations in levels of happiness can be explained by economic factors (such as income and employment), social factors (such as education and family life), and health (mental and physical). Mental health explains more of the variance of happiness in
than income does.

On happiness at work
Well-paying jobs are conducive to happiness, but this is far from the whole story. A range of further aspects are found to be strongly predictive of happiness. Other important job factors driving subjective wellbeing include work-life balance, autonomy, variety, job security, social capital, and health and safety risks.

Learn more about the United Nations World Happiness Report here.

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