Israel is a much better place to be born today than Britain, the Economist has reported.
The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), the sister company to The Economist has produced a quality of life index that measures which country will “provide the best opportunities for a healthy, safe and prosperous life in the years ahead.”
According to the survey, Israel is the 20th best country to be born in today, far above Britain in 27th place. The results are in stark comparison to a survey the EIU conducted in 1988, which put the UK in 7th place and Israel at number 30.
This year’s survey, topped by Switzerland, takes into account both how happy people in the 80 countries surveyed say they are, as well as objective measures of quality of life.
GDP per capita, life expectancy and crime rates are some of the more obvious factors included, but are joined by climate, gender equality and corruption. An element of prediction is included to account for how the countries will develop as the babies of 2013 grow up.
While Switzerland, Australia and Norway made up the top three, Israel’s neighbours appeared considerably lower in the rankings. Iran came in at 58 and Egypt at 60 while Jordan was even further down at 69. Some wealthy Western countries also surprisingly performed worse than Israel, including France, Spain and Japan.
The 1988 survey put the US in first place and Zimbabwe in 48th, but was slightly less rigorous in its analysis. Measures taken into account included the “yawn index”, described as “the degree to which, despite all its virtues, a country may be irredeemably boring”, and awarded extra points to Canada for the desirability of its passport and Switzerland and Belgium for the quality of its chocolate.