These are world’s best cities to live in, according to researchers

An annual index of the world’s most liveable cities is dominated by Europe and Canada. It is a global index of cities that are most liveable, which shows a world rebounding from the pandemic.

It is politically stable, with low crime, excellent healthcare, world-class cultural institutions and slick infrastructure — all of which helped Vienna top an annual index of the world’s most liveable cities. 

Rating cities for their liveability is a difficult task, but it is possible. Economist Intelligence UnitEach year, EIU sets itself new goals. It evaluates 172 cities across five categories, including stability, healthcare and culture and environment, education, infrastructure, and health.

Copenhagen, the capital of Denmark, was ranked second in the most recent index. Calgary in Canada was joint third, while Zurich in Switzerland came in at third. The highest ranked UK city was Manchester — placed 28th — edging out London in 33rd. The US was also not in the top 25. Atlanta ranked 26th among the top performing cities. 

Of Vienna (main image), the report’s authors said: “Stability and good infrastructure are the city’s main charms for its inhabitants, supported by good healthcare and plenty of opportunities for culture and entertainment.” 

The Austrian capital has been ranked the highest in the world, despite having one of the highest taxes in Europe. In a separate survey in 2020, it was ranked the world’s greenest city.  

The EIU reported that the average liveability score has almost returned to pre-pandemic levels after falling significantly during the worst days. 

Best cities to live in

The Danish capital was ranked second, a city known for its relaxed lifestyle. Image: Nick Karvounis

“The picture that emerges is a broadly positive one. Amid the gradual — and ongoing — shift in the status of Covid-19 from pandemic to endemic, and a rise in global vaccination rates, the global average liveability score has rebounded,” it said. 

However, it added: “Although the pandemic has receded, a new threat to liveability emerged when Russia invaded Ukraine in the middle of our survey period. We were forced to abort our survey for Kyiv, excluding Ukraine’s capital from our rankings.” 

The EIU does not take cost of living into account when compiling the index, which of course impacts people’s ability to live comfortably. The organization has an additional ranking for this: the annual Worldwide Cost of Living Report.

Its most recent edition identified Tel Aviv, Israel, to be the most expensive city in the world, followed by Paris and Singapore — none of which featured in the top 10 liveability ranking. 


According to EIU, the EIU lists the top cities to live in.

1. Vienna, Austria
Copenhagen, Denmark
3. Zurich, Switzerland
=. Calgary, Canada
5. Vancouver, Canada
6. Geneva, Switzerland
7. Frankfurt, Germany
8. Toronto, Canada
9. Amsterdam, Netherlands
10. Osaka, Japan
=. Melbourne, Australia 

Main image: Hundertwasser House in Vienna, Austria. Vladislav Zolotov/iStock

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