With international travel still firmly off the cards for the foreseeable future, reading about the top picks in 2021’s Global Liveability Index might seem like a cruel joke, but instead the abundance of Australian cities paints a picture that perhaps the grass isn’t greener on the other side of the world, but is rather quite soft, quite luscious really, right where we are now. The ranking, which comes courtesy of the Economic Intelligence Unit, determines liveability by accessing various factors. These include the likes of a city’s stability, healthcare, education, infrastructure, culture and environment. Out of the 140 cities ranked on the index, each is then given a rating out of 100.
If you’ve followed the ranking for a few years now, you’d likely find the results to be largely predictable with the usual names taking out the most covetable spots. Taking out the top spot this year is Auckland with an aggregate score of 96, while Osaka trailed by just 1.8 points. According to the rationale, New Zealand’s response to the global pandemic was a big factor in seeing it climb the ranks. “Owing to border closures and consequently low Covid-19 case count, New Zealand has been able to keep its theatres, restaurants, and other cultural attractions open,” read the rationale.
“Students have been able to continue going to school, giving Auckland a 100 per cent score for education. This has allowed the city to move up from 6th place in our Autumn 2020 survey to first position in our March 2021 rankings.”
Still, if there’s one surprise to come out of the 2021 rankings it might just be the fact that even with their inability to stop the spread of coronavirus and avoid going into lockdown for what seems like every other week, Melbourne is still considered more liveable than Sydney. Taking out the top spot for Australia was Adelaide in third place with 94.0, followed by Perth in sixth place with 93.3, Melbourne in ninth with 92.5 and Brisbane in tenth with 92.4. Pushed out of the top ten, Sydney now finds itself in eleventh place.
As for the least liveable cities in the world, taking out top spot was Damascus, Syria with 26.5, followed closely by Lagos, Nigeria with 31.2, Port Moresby, PNG with 32.5 and Dhaka, Bangladesh with 33.5. For more details on the full list, visit the website here.