What the report says about global happiness, and India's gladness quotient

What the report says about global happiness, and India's gladness quotient

The report, released ahead of the United Nations World Happiness Day on March 20, ranked 156 countries on six variables - income, life expectancy, freedom, social support, trust and generosity.

In East Asia, Singapore was ranked 34th, Japan 54th, South Korea 57th, Hong Kong 76th and China 86th.

Nigeria has been ranked the 91 happiest nation of the world, and fifth in Africa in the 2018 World Happiness Report.

Comparing the happiness levels of locally-born and foreign-born people has been a focus point of this year's report.

Among other Asian nations, Mongolia was ranked at 94, Vietnam at 95, Indonesia, 96, Bhutan - which was once the happiest - at 97, Nepal at 101, Laos, 110, Bangladesh, 115, Sri Lanka, 116, Cambodia, 120 and Myanmar, 130.

Finland is the happiest place on earth, followed by Norway and Denmark, says the report prepared by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network (SDSN), a global initiative launched by the United Nations in 2012.

Venezuela recorded the biggest decline in well-being, and the U.S. dropped four spots from past year to 18th spot.

This year Finland takes the top spot as the happiest country as measured by surveys undertaken by Gallup International from 2015-2017.

The study found that the 10 happiest countries in the overall rankings also scored highest on immigrant happiness, suggesting that migrants' wellbeing depends primarily on the quality of life in their adopted home.

"Governments are increasingly using indicators of happiness to inform their policy-making decisions", said economics professor Jeffrey D. Sachs, director of Columbia University's Center for Sustainable Development and report co-editor.

Inari Lepisto, 28, also of Helsinki, added: "It's a great thing to live in the happiest country although it's snowing and we are walking in this wet snow. So, yes, we have the ideal circumstances to have a happy life here in Finland", she told the Associated Press.

The United States was 11th in the first index and has never been in the top 10. To explain its fall to 18th, the report's authors cited several factors.

The rankings of the countries were made after analyzing data from surveys done in 156 countries from 2015 to 2017.

The report states that countries "with a more balanced set of social and institutional support for better lives" ranked higher on the immigrant happiness list, showing that the richest countries don't necessarily have the happiest migrants.

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