11 July 2024

Thailand has been ranked 48th in the World Happiness Report 2021, the same as last year. Finland remains in top position, followed by Iceland and Denmark.

Of the 95 countries and territories surveyed, Tanzania, Jordan and Zimbabwe received the lowest rankings respectively.

The report calculates the rankings based on several factors, including gross domestic product and life expectancy, using data from the Gallup World Poll as the primary source. They also use data from around 1,000 individual responses to surveys from each country or territory. This year, they collected a broader variety of data, to measure the impacts of COVID-19.

The report stated that there are a small number of places from which the data arrived too late for inclusion in this report, while many switched from face-to-face to phone interviews.

The 9th World Happiness Report states that its purpose remains to measure and use subjective well-being to track and explain the quality of lives all over the world.

The report claims to use responses at the individual level to investigate how the pandemic has affected the happiness of different population subgroups.

Researchers concluded that the pandemic has led to increases in negative psychological outcomes, such as depression and anxiety, for a large portion of the global population.

These effects are worse in younger age groups and women, ethnic minorities and those with pre-existing mental health problems, thus reinforcing the presence of many pre-existing mental health inequalities. There is still much uncertainty, however, about how the full mental health consequences of COVID-19 will play out.

In summary, the report states that, although there were significant increases in average sadness and worry, overall life evaluations and happiness rankings were surprisingly stable. The top countries before the pandemic remained the top countries in 2020, so there is little change in the overall rankings.

The report says the same six factors which support well-being, namely income, health, someone to count on, freedom, generosity and trust, continue to do so in almost exactly the same way as in previous years.