Greeks 70th in world happiness index, showing decline from pre-crisis levels

Greece ranked a little above the middle in the 70th spot among 156 nations in the United Nations’ first-ever World Happiness Report, drafted by the Sustainable Development Solutions Network and published on Monday.

Greeks also came second behind Egyptians in the dramatic decline of their happiness index from pre-crisis levels, according to the report, which compared the period of 2005-2007 with that of 2010-2012. Crisis-hit European peers in Spain came sixth in deteriorating happiness, the Italians came eighth and the Portuguese ranked in 12th place.

Ranking happiness on a scale of 0-10, the survey of 156 nations measured factors such as wealth, political freedom, strong social networks and an absence of corruption. On an individual level, good mental and physical health, someone to rely on, job security and stable families are also crucial factors that are taken into account for measuring well-being and happiness.

The world happiness average, according to the UN report, is 5.1 points, with Greece scoring a slightly higher 5.4 points at the 70th spot.

The least happy people in the world are found in poor Sub-Saharan African countries such as Togo, Benin, Central African Republic and Sierra Leone, while the happiest people are in northern Europe, and especially in Denmark, Norway, Finland and The Netherlands, where the average life evaluation score came to 7.6 on the 0-to-10 scale.

Greece’s neighbors Cyprus and Albania have happier people than Greece ranking in the 34th and 62nd spots respectively, though Turks are more unhappy than Greeks at 77th place.

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