BANGKOK (The Nation/Asia News Network): Thailand is the 61st happiest country in the world, according to the latest World Happiness Report.
The report surveyed data from 146 countries over the past three years (2019-2021). The data came under six criteria: gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, social support, healthy life expectancy at birth, freedom to make life choices, generosity and perceptions of corruption.
In South-East Asia, Singapore came out top with a ranking of 27th, ahead of Philippines (60), Thailand (61), Malaysia (70), Vietnam (77), Indonesia (87), Laos (95), Cambodia (114) and Myanmar (126).
Finland topped the global rankings as the world's happiest country this year, followed by Denmark, Iceland, Switzerland, Netherlands, Luxembourg, Sweden, Norway, Israel and New Zealand.
The report showed that measures of emotions play an even greater role in the analysis of life under Covid-19.
"This is partly because Covid-19 has affected various emotions differently and partly because emotions based on yesterday's experiences tend to be more volatile than life evaluations, which are more stable in response to temporary disturbances," the report said.
It said worry and sadness have been rising over the past 10 years, especially during 2020, the first year of Covid-19, before improving somewhat in 2021.
It added that some of the evidence showed that large crises can lead to improvements in trust, benevolence and well-being if it leads people to reach out to help others.
“Looking to the future, it is important to know whether trust and benevolence have been fostered or destroyed by two years of the pandemic," the report concluded.