but it’s better than living in Spain which came lowest of all the developed nations studied by PwC and the Demos think tank.
Norway, Germany, and the Netherlands are the top three places to live and work among leading OECD countries that were scored on a “Good Growth” Index which measures not just GDP but unemployment, health, work-life balance, and housing, among other factors.
So why did people in the UK rate their country so badly? They were unhappy with average working hours, income equality, and transport costs, among other things.
The authors of the report warn the government that the public takes a wide view of what constitutes economic success including creating employment and fairness.
Health was also an issue that concerned people and the report suggested that good health should also be part of the government’s economic policy.
Norway came top because of a low unemployment rate of 3.2% compared with 7.8% in the UK, fewer working hours and higher savings rates, three times higher than in the UK.
Norway also has more space, there are only 34 people per square mile compared with 660 in the UK. It’s murder rate, the recent massacre notwithstanding, is one of the lowest in the world, only half that of the UK and a tenth of that in the USA.
The male to female ratio is almost equal and there is a life expectancy of 82 years of age. And Norwegians are well-educated; 40% of the 25-34 age group have degrees which is well above the OECD average of 29%. Not surprising when they are the 18th highest spender in the world on education.
This is not the only attempt to measure national well-being and the OECD has a “Create you own better life” calculator where you can work out which country you would prefer to live in. Australia came first in their own comparisons with a high proportion of Australians being satisfied with their lot