Countries can be defined by many factors – its geography, its wildlife, its language, its food, its people. More so though, an impression is created by a strong cultural aspect.
While other countries regard themselves as peace-loving when they're fed up invading their neighbors' border every decade or so, Iceland's continued pacifist stance has made it the world's most peaceful country since 2006. The Global Peace Index shows Iceland is a place boasting an "absence of violence". In 2012 the country became the planet's most peaceful country, ahead of Denmark and New Zealand. Cynics might say Iceland's too remote to start wars and too cold for people hanging around after dark in search of street fights! Iceland could have made this list twice because it is also the coolest country for cleanliness according to researchers at Columbia and Yale Universities. Coming out squeaky clean at the very top in a cleanliness index of 163 countries on the universities' Environmental Performance Index, Iceland has a 93.5 out of 100 score on water and air quality, greenhouse gas emissions and the impact of the country's environment on the population's health.
Peace-loving AND gender-friendly? Whatever next! Rated by The Economist as one of the countries where females cab expect to be treated on equal footing with males in the work place, New Zealand has managed to do away with the glass ceiling, wage gap and all that other irritating nonsense still dogging women in so-called civilized countries like...complete the sentence if your own country's still got a long way to go! Sweden and Finland also score highly in The Economist's index, while the US is hovering somewhere in the middle.
Canada tops the chart of the 10 countries listed in a study conducted by the Organization for Economic Cooperation & Development (OECD). The country has the highest proportion of college-educated adult residents and is the only country in the world where more than 50% of its residents boast college degrees.
The Greek economy may be somewhat limp at present, but the country's Don Juans and femme fatales, to mix a few European languages into the stew of love, are certainly bright-eyed, bushy-tailed and up for anything. According to the Durex survey rankings reported by British media, Greece's citizens are the horniest in the world, having sex at least once a week. And this is where countries like Canada (too busy studying) and the US (too busy making money) fall seriously short. To make it into the coolest country for sex list, at least three quarters of a country's population has to be writhing between the sheets regularly.
Is it any surprise French residents feel pessimistic? No, because they had expected to come top in the world's most sex-practicing nations! Even having the world's finest cuisines and some of the best wines this side of Mount Olympus won't cheer them up, apparently. The French are the most pessimistic people in the world, according to an annual survey conducted by the polling institute BVA-Group for the daily newspaper Le Parisien. Comparing 51 countries, the survey revealed that material wealth doesn't make you happy - the most doom-ridden countries are all based in Europe, while people in Asia and Africa are among the happiest. France, despite its glorious Riviera sunshine, scored a negative rating of 79.
Not only are Colombians blessed with a flavorsome, delicious cuisine and gorgeous landscapes, they are the world's happiest residents, according to the Global Barometer of Hope and Happiness. The survey, conducted by the WIN/Gallup International Association, looked at 54 countries and discovered that Colombians are nearly twice as happy as the world's average citizen. Brazil and Peru came third and eighth respectively, proving once and for all that being born with "the Latin groove" puts a smile on your face.
The title of the richest country in the world goes, not unexpectedly to a Middle Eastern country. Qatar has been heading the country rich lists for a few years now, lists produced by International Monetary Fund, Forbes and other institutions. The wealth comes from oil and natural gas. It has been at the center of the recent crisis in world soccer with allegations of vote rigging in the bidding process for the World Cup but it seems like the best soccer players will still be heading to Qatar in 2022. The world will then see how Qatar throws a party.
What makes your country cool? I’m English and I say we’re cool because of our heritage and history.
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