United States in sad shape on world happiness scale

The U.S. -the wealthiest country in the world and, by many metrics, the most powerful-was ranked lower than a year ago, even as its citizens get richer.

It measures the happiness under the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network.

It also takes into account GDP per capita, healthy life expectancy, freedom, generosity, social support and absence of corruption in government or business.

Norway is officially the happiest place on Earth, according to the latest World Happiness Report released on Monday.

The despite economic gains and gains in expected years of healthy life, happiness in the United States is declining.

The world happiness report does not only contain the monetary valuation of the country but also contains questions related to happiness which helps to develop policies which has an effect on the lives of the people.

The unhappiest countries include Afghanistan at 154, Togo and Syria. In 2012, the U.N. General Assembly declared March 20 as World Happiness Day.

With an average rank of 7.537, the happiest country in the world is Norway, according to the poll.

Scandinavian countries dominated the top, with Norway, Denmark and Iceland heading up the rankings, while Finland was placed fifth and Sweden came in 10th. It is important to note that although the income per person has almost tripled since 1960, happiness among Americans hasn't increased.

"The United States should increase the happiness levels by overcoming America's multi-faceted social crisis such as growing inequality, corruption, isolation and distrust instead of focussing only on the economic growth", the authors said. It found that despite economic improvement since the recession, Americans have become increasingly less happy since 2006.

The report surveys people from various countries around the world looking for which one has the happiest population.

The title of the lowest ranked happy place goes to Central African Republic. "To do this successfully requires high levels of mutual trust, shared objective, generosity and good governance, all factors that help to keep Norway and other top countries where they are in the happiness rankings".

What are the factors on which the rankings were based?

  • Leroy Wright