For what it’s worth, the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) has again analysed 34 member nations to ascertain which offer the highest quality of life for their inhabitants. Not for the first time, Australia has come out on top in the organisation’s annual Beter Life Index; Canada came in 3rd place, the United States came in 6th place this year, with the United Kingdom 10th.
The survey takes into account 11 categories, including income, housing, jobs, community, education, environment, civic engagement, life satisfaction, safety, and work-life balance.
It’s not difficult to guess why life is comparatively good in Australia. For a start there’s that great weather, apart from the increasingly brutal heat waves during summer that is. Australia also has the good economic fortune (so far) of not falling into recession while most of the rest of the developed world plunged deeply.
Australia has now had a full 20 year period of economic growth, and unemployment has been under 6 percent. It is often said that Australia’s economic good fortune has largely been underpinned by its massive mining boom, driven by sales to a rapidly growing Chinese economy. I wonder how sustainable that is, in more than one sense of the word. Nevertheless, l can say with considerable personal experience (as I lived in Australia for many years up until recently), life is indeed pretty good in Australia.
If you’ve visited various countries, does the Better Life Index seem about right to you? Here are the top 10 in order, with an extra 5 for good measure.
- United States
- United Kingdom
- New Zealand
Image CC licensed by M Hooper: Bondi Beach, Sydney, Australia