͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ ͏‌ 
Gallup logo

The World's Voice in Numbers


March 20, 2024

We know how much our Front Page subscribers love data-driven insights on how life is being experienced around the world — so we're delighted to send you this special edition celebrating the release of the 2024 World Happiness Report, powered by the Gallup World Poll.


1. The Happiest Country in the World Is …

Heat Map: World map showing the countries with the highest and lowest Happiness Index scores.

The Data: Finland tops the global happiness leaderboard for the seventh straight year with a score of 7.741, followed closely by Denmark at 7.583. Iceland, Sweden and Israel also make strong showings to round out the top five.

The Bigger Picture: The top 10 countries have remained much the same since before the COVID-19 pandemic. Finland is still on top, with Denmark close behind, and all five Nordic countries are in the top 10.

Go deeper here

2. Not-So-Golden Years

Bar Chart: Globally, the age group below 30 has the highest happiness score.

The Data: Worldwide, the age group below 30 leads with a happiness score of 5.685, and those aged 60 and older have a score of 5.130.

U.S. Outlier: Global happiness shows a slight but consistent decline as people age. The report explores different countries and regional differences. Notably, the U.S. bucks this trend — the older age group (60+) reports higher happiness ratings than the younger group (<30). America still ranks in the top 10 countries for those aged 60 and older, with a score of 7.258 out of 10. But for those under 30, it ranks 62nd, with a score of 6.392.

3. There's No “U” in Happiness

Multiple Line Charts: Happiness by age and region from 2021 to 2023.

The Data: In many regions of the world, those younger than 30 are typically happier than those aged 60 and older. The region with the largest age difference is Central and Eastern Europe, where the youngest group scores 6.884 out of 10 and the oldest group scores 5.578.

Why This Matters: But there are some regional outliers, like in North America and Australia and New Zealand, where those aged 60 and older are much happier than those below 30. These regional plots challenge the traditional Western belief of a U-shaped happiness curve.

4. Is There an Age Requirement for Happiness?

Table: The 10 countries with the highest and lowest happiness rankings for those under 30 and 60 and older.

The Data: Lithuania has emerged as the front-runner for young adults under 30, boasting a happiness score of 7.759. Denmark is the happiest country for those aged 60 and older, scoring 7.916, followed closely by Finland's 7.912.

Why This Matters: The ranking of countries by happiness is different for the young and the old. The happiness of different generations offers a window into cultures, economies, social policies, educational opportunities and economic prospects, as well as social support systems and healthcare options.

5. Why Measure Happiness?

Video Thumbnail: Links to YouTube video of Gallup CEO Jon Clifton speaking about the World Happiness Report.

Watch: Gallup CEO Jon Clifton talks about the history and future of the World Happiness Report.

From the Intro: “Effective policymaking relies on solid data, yet there remains a significant lack of it in various parts of the world. … Today's World Happiness Report attempts to bridge some of these gaps by offering insights into people's perceptions of life on Earth. It offers more than just national rankings; it provides analytics and advice for evidence-based planning and policymaking. Our role in research on world happiness is a natural fit with our long-standing mission: providing leaders with the right information about what people say makes life worthwhile.” — Jon Clifton, CEO, Gallup

Watch the video here

A forward is the best compliment. Tell a friend to sign up for Front Page here.

Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Instagram YouTube
Gallup World Headquarters, 901 F Street, NW, Washington, D.C. 20004 USA
Legal | Unsubscribe | Manage Your Email Preferences
Copyright © 2024 Gallup, Inc. All rights reserved.