The Philippines ranked 67th among 142 countries in the world with the happiest citizens in the 2012 Legatum Institute Prosperity Index, posted on Forbes.com. Norway topped the list in the last three reports in 2010, 2011, and 2012. The next happiest countries after Norway were Denmark, Sweden, Australia, New Zealand, Canada, Finland, the Netherlands, Switzerland, and Ireland.
The Legatum Prosperity Index, an annual global survey developed by the London-based Legatum Institute, is a unique assessment of global wealth and wellbeing in eight categories – economy, entrepreneurship and opportunity, governance, education, health, safety and security, personal freedom, and social capital. The survey is helped by data from Gallup World Roll, World Development Indicators, GDP, World Intellectual Property Organization, United Nations Human Development Report, World Bank, Organization for Economic Co-operation and Development, and World Values Survey.
An overwhelming 93 percent of surveyed Filipinos said they believe that “people are treated with respect in the country,” higher than the global average of 85.1%, while 81.8% are “satisfied with the beauty of the environment” (75.1% global). A high 79.8% are “satisfied with government efforts” (40.2% global) and 88.3% are “satisfied with freedom of choice” (75.8% global). The highest Philippines ranked 47th in economy, 63rd in governance, 75th in entrepreneurship and opportunity, 72nd in education system, 93rd in health, 55th in personal freedom, and 72nd in social capital.
Legatum Institute researchers started to rank the happiest countries in the world six years ago. It defines happiness as being healthy, having enough food and enough money to buy what one wants, being able to speak what is on one’s mind, free to worship, feel safe and secure, having opportunity to get an education, and be an entrepreneur.