Vienna, Austria, was ranked first, followed by Melbourne, Australia, and Osaka, Japan. These findings are based on The Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), the research and analysis division of the Economist Group. The annual survey considers 30 factors related to safety, healthcare, educational resources, infrastructure and the environment. Small and mid-sized cities have fared better than the larger ones throughout the index.
Canada and Australia both have three cities in the top 10: Calgary, Vancouver and Toronto, Canada and Melbourne, Sydney and Adelaide, Australia. New to the top 10 is Japan, with Osaka and Tokyo, while Copenhagen, Denmark is also new this year.
On the other end of the spectrum, Karachi, Pakistan has ranked 137th, or 4th least liveable cities of the world. The survey found that terrorism and civil war played a “strong role” in the worst performing cities. Conflict was responsible for the low scores obtained by many of the cities like Damascus, Karachi and Tripoli.
In the survey, Manchester saw the biggest improvement of any European city, rising by 16 places to rank 35th. Manchester’s rise puts it ahead of London in the rankings by 13 places, the widest gap between the two cities since the survey began two decades ago.
According to the EIU, Manchester’s jump in the rankings was due to an improved security score. The survey was criticized last year for demoting Manchester after the Manchester Arena attack which killed 22 people.
This year, the researchers observed that although Manchester had been “subject to high-profile terrorist attacks in recent years, it had shown resilience in the face of adversity”.
According to the survey, wealthy financial capitals such as Paris, London and New York tended to be victims of their own success with higher crime rates.