“Verum, shouldn’t the World Happiness Report be out now? I want to know which are the happiest countries in the world!” said Scorch.

“Hmm, let me check,” said Verum, gazing into her crystal ball, “Oh yes! It was released in March! Let’s check it out!”

The Sustainable Development Solutions Network for the United Nations (UN) releases the annual World Happiness Report. This is also the 10th anniversary of this report.

“Which country is the happiest in the world?” said Scorch.

“Finland! It was named the world’s happiest country for the fifth year in a row!” replied Verum.

“And which countries come after Finland?” said Scorch.

“Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland, and the Netherlands are in the second, third, fourth, and fifth place respectively,” said Verum, “Hmm, this is strange. Canada was in the fifth place last year but this year, it dropped to the 15th place.”

“How interesting that all the top five countries are in Europe,” murmured Scorch.

“Verum, how are these rankings calculated?” said Felix.

“The ranking is based on polling. People who respond have to look at six variables,” replied Verum, “The first is the Gross Domestic Product (GDP). Through the GDP, the average amount of money each person in the country has to buy goods and services can be calculated.

Along with this, the report looks at social support that includes having your friends and family around, and freedom to make life choices, among other variables.”

She added, “You know what is super cool? Despite the pandemic creating difficult situations across the world, more people began helping each other by volunteering and donating in 2021.”

“That’s a silver lining. When the times got tough, people got together to weather through them,” said Scorch, “But which countries ranked the lowest?”

“Afghanistan ranked the lowest at the 146th position,” said Verum, “2021 has been tumultuous for the wartorn country. Lebanon, Zimbabwe, Rwanda, and Botswana were at the 145th, 144th, 143rd, and 142nd positions respectively.”

“Okay, thank you for sharing, Verum,” said Scorch.