Search icon


09th Jul 2023

UK is the 13th best place to live in the world according to latest research


UK named 13th best place to live in the world

We’re one behind the Seychelles

The UK is the 13th best place to live in the world, according to new research.

Experts looked at 173 states and graded them on how well they fulfilled their residents’ basic needs.

Singapore came out on top, followed by Australia and Denmark with the Netherlands, Estonia, Luxembourg, Norway, Belgium, New Zealand and Germany making up the rest of the top ten.

The USA came 23rd with Taiwan, 43rd, beating China into 61st place. At 68th, North Korea was two above Russia in 70th with Ukraine currently in 129th following the invasion.

The bottom three who were all classed as collapsed states were South Sudan, 171, Yemen, 172 and Libya 173.

France, the scene of recent unrest was 20th with Papua New Guinea the highest ranking collapsed state at 163, above Syria, 165 and Somalia 166.

Political scientists Dr Theresa Paola Stawski at the Department of Comparative Politics and Systems at the Julius-Maximilians-Universität Würzburg (JMU) said: “We can see the state in everything that surrounds us, for example in the streets, the courts, the police or the schools.

“The fact that a patient who needs an X-ray examination receives a doctor’s appointment promptly, that there are schools all over the country and that electricity flows day and night, all this constitutes a well-functioning state.”


Referring to types of government she added: “A functioning state does not have to be democratic.

“Whether a state functions well or not does not always have something to do with democracy.

“Singapore, for example, is not a democracy. The United Arab Emirates (32nd) is also in the field of highly functional states.”

According to the Stateness Index, a Cypriot currently lives in a “defective” state, just like a Moroccan or an Indian.

In a country where, for example, there is no freedom of speech, people can still be well provided with all the essentials of life.

The research project “The Statehood Index Stix” analyses the classic state’s monopoly on law, violence and administration.

Dr Stawski added: “We did not only measure the formal state, but we also looked at the informal side, such as corruption.

“In some countries, you have to reckon with the fact that the law enforcement agencies are bribed.

“There may be enough police officers. But when police officers act in a biased way, it is bad for citizens.

“Well-done reforms can improve governance, mere changes of government, on the other hand, often have little effect.”

So although we have our problems we are still one of the best places to live.

Dr Stawski added: “Elsewhere there are famines, epidemics and serious diseases, and almost no medical care.

“Things we take for granted are not available at all or no longer available in many countries of the world.”

Related links:

Little-known destination called the ‘Maldives of Europe’ is cheap and just three hours away from UK

Best place to live in UK has been announced – and the results will surprise you

The UK is one of the best places to survive a cataclysmic event, study finds