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Demark Ranked Number 1 in the World as Happiest

Getty Images, photo by Christoph Koepsel

Denmark has been named the happiest country on the planet, again. It seems like every year, since 1973 when the study first came out, Denmark has been at the top of the list. The Danes wonder why, but the facts are there.

There are six factors used to determine the happiest country: A large gross domestic product (GDP) per capita, healthy life expectancy from birth, lack of corruption in leadership, sense of social support, freedom to make life choices and a culture of generosity.

Take maternal leave for instance. In America, new mothers receive an average of 10.3 weeks for maternal leave. In Denmark, the receive a total of 52 weeks of parental leave, 18 weeks for the mother, 2 weeks for the father and rest is to be used as the family sees fit, all with full pay.

Children receive free or low cost child care with educational benefits. This allows 79 per cent of Danish mothers to return to their previous level of employment as compared to 52 per cent in the United States.

Healthcare is a basic right and they take advantage of it, too. While in the U.S. we see a doctor 3 to 4 times a year which is mostly emergency room visits. They see their family doctor7 times a year which allows them to catch more serious matters early.

Denmark also ranks in the top 10 in the world in gender equality with a strong presence of women in leadership roles.

Other reasons factor in, too, for a country with a harsh winter climate and high fuel prices, but whatever they are doing it seems to be working.

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