It’s a new month, which means an interesting new statement – this time we’re looking at the Institute for Economics and Peace, which recently released their Global Peace Index for 2018.
The index measures the peacefulness of a country and looks at 23 different factors, such as level of violent crime, nuclear weapons, number of refugees, and relations with neighboring countries.
Not surprisingly, Nordic countries took the majority of the top 20 spots in the index. Norway, Finland, and Sweden came in 16th, 15th, and 14th place respectively. A few spots up was Denmark, at number 5, and Iceland took the top spot as the most peaceful country of 2018. The North American countries didn’t fare as well. Even though Canada was listed as the 6th most peaceful country, the United States was nearly at the bottom – at number 121 (out of a possible 163 countries). Mexico was even lower at number 140.
What makes the Nordic countries so safe (and friendly)? Let’s take a quick look! First off, the Nordics have a relatively homogenous society with little difference between the upper and lower class. There’s a strong social welfare network that makes sure nobody goes poor, which leads to fewer crimes. Finally, there is transparency and low tolerance to violence; if someone commits a crime, the government’s goal is usually to rehabilitate the criminal instead of punishing them. All of these things have helped the Nordic countries, particularly Iceland, Denmark, and Sweden, stay at the top of the rankings for the past 5 years in a row.
Interested in seeing the top 20 most peaceful countries for 2018? The full list is below:
2. New Zealand
7. The Czech Republic
(Tie) 17. Germany
(Tie) 17. Hungary