Canada moves up into first place for Best Countries Report

Our beloved nation has taken first place, for the first time, in the 2021 Best Countries Report. After ranking second in 2020, Canada has surpassed Switzerland in the 2021 report, as analyzed by its categorical, data-focused methodology. It's followed by Japan, Germany, Switzerland, and Australia. Our southern neighbor comes in sixth place, while Iraq takes the final, 78th place.  

A ranking and analysis project by US News & World Report; BAV Group, a unit of global marketing communications company VMLY&R; and the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, the Best Countries report analyzes the performances of different nations based on a number of categories. Two categories were added this year, and articulated through a model focused on COVID-19 response. Economics, Politics, Cultural Influence and Technology are key influencing subrankings, along with two new additions - Social Purpose and Agility. 

Though we’re in first place overall now, we’ve been in first place for a very important category: Quality of Life. For the sixth consecutive year, Canada takes the cake in first place for providing a good quality of life. The ranking is based on whether a country is affordable, has a good job market, is economically stable; is family friendly, has income equality; that it is politically stable, safe, has a well-developed public education system and a well-developed public health system. 

We’re also in first place for social purpose - a new subranking that replaces the Citizen subranking. This is based on a country’s ability to create a sense of cultural cohesion by providing the ability to support the causes its citizens’ feel strongly about. Ranging from human rights to bodily autonomy or religious freedom, the project “evaluated ‘perceptions on participating countries’ advocacy for these causes, and complied them into a Social Purpose subranking”. 

78 participating countries are studied and ranked, using storytelling and data to analyze responses to several global issues and citizen satisfaction.  This project uses qualitative and quantitative data, and features comprehensive news articles and commentary from global experts in business, economics, academia, and government.  

Here is a snapshot of some of the rankings from the 2021 Best Countries Report: 

Best overall country 
  • Canada 
  • Japan 
  • Germany 
  • Switzerland 
  • Australia 
Quality of life 
  • Canada 
  • Denmark 
  • New Zealand 
  • Sweden 
  • Netherlands 
Entrepreneurship 
  • Japan 
  • Germany 
  • United States 
  • United Kingdom 
  • South Korea 
Social purpose 
  • Canada 
  • Denmark 
  • New Zealand 
  • Sweden 
  • Netherlands 
Cultural Influence 
  • Italy 
  • France 
  • United States 
  • United Kingdom 
  • Japan 
Open for business (most business-friendly) 
  • Switzerland 
  • Panama 
  • Canada 
  • Denmark 
  • Sweden 
Adventure (best to visit) 
  • Brazil 
  • Italy 
  • Spain 
  • Greece 
  • Thailand