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Ireland falls behind UK in world happiness rankings


We’re now 16th happiest

We’re now 16th happiest

We’re now 16th happiest

Ireland has become a slightly less happy place to live, the annual United Nations investigation into contentedness across the globe suggests.

The seventh World Happiness Report ranked Ireland 16th out of 156 countries - a fall of two places on the previous year's report.

The country is still above the likes of Germany (17th), Belgium (18th) and the United States (19th).

But the UK is now ranked as more cheerful than Ireland, having risen four places in the list to 15th.

The happiest country - for the second year running - is Finland, ahead of Denmark, Norway, Iceland and the Netherlands. New Zealand (8th) and Canada (9th) are the only non-European nations in the top 10.

The scores are based on individuals' assessments of their own lives over a two-year period.


The evaluation asks up to 3,000 survey respondents in each country to place the status of their lives on a "ladder" scale ranging from 0 to 10, where 0 means the worst possible life and 10 the best possible life.

The report sees South Sudan replacing Burundi as the least happy country, ahead of the Central African Republic and Afghanistan.

Separate data on GDP, life expectancy, generosity, social support, freedom and corruption is also included in the report.

It shows Ireland (6th) ranks above the UK (9th) for social support, GDP (6th for Ireland compared with 23rd for the UK) and healthy life expectancy (20th compared with 24th).

But the UK has one of the best generosity rankings (4th) of all countries, ahead of Ireland in 9th.