European cities dominate quality of living rankings

Despite recent security issues, social unrest, and concern about the region’s economic outlook, European cities continue to offer some of the worlds’ highest quality-of-living, according to the recently released Mercer Quality of Living Survey 2016.

European cities fill seven places in the top-ten positions in the list. Austria’s capital Vienna continues to lead the rankings, as it has for the past seven years. It is followed by Zurich (2), Munich (4), Dusseldorf (6), Frankfurt (7), Geneva (8), and Copenhagen (9). The only non-European cities in the top ten are Auckland, New Zealand (3), Vancouver, Canada (5) and Sydney, Australia (10).

A number of key or capital European cities do rank considerably lower as many suffered either terrorist attacks or social unrest in the last few years. Examples include Paris (71), London (72), Madrid (84), and Athens (124).

The lowest ranking cities in Europe are Kiev (176), Tirana (179), and Minsk (190).

The highest ranking US city is San Francisco (28), while Boston (35), Chicago (43), and New York City (44) are also ranked in the top 50.

Canadian cities performed notably better than those of its southern neighbour. In addition to Vancouver’s top-ten ranking, Toronto was placed 15th with Ottawa two places lower and Montreal in 23rd.

Australian cities were also considered to have a high quality of live. Aside from the aforementioned Sydney, Melbourne (16) and Perth (22) were also ranked in the top 25, while New Zealand’s capital, Wellington was placed just outside the top ten in 12th.

Dubai (75) continues to rank highest for quality of living across Africa and the Middle East, followed by Abu Dhabi (81) and Port Louis (83) in Mauritius, while in the vast region of Asia there is a considerable variation in quality of living. Singapore remains its highest ranking city, in 26th place.

Mercer evaluates local living conditions in more than 440 cities surveyed worldwide. Living conditions are analysed according to 39 factors, grouped in 10 categories, which include political and social environment; medical and health considerations; and Schools and education.

Article by David Fuller