Every year, 156 countries are rated on the happiness scale, released by the World Happiness Report and created by the United Nations Sustainable Development Solutions Network. This year’s report “focuses on happiness and the community: how happiness has evolved over the past dozen years, with a focus on the technologies, social norms, conflicts and government policies that have driven those changes”.

And for the second year in a row, Finland has taken the number one spot, followed by Denmark in second place and Norway in third. All other countries except for New Zealand and Canada were European nations.

John F. Helliwell, one of the editors of the report, states that “The top 10 countries tend to rank high in all six variables, as well as emotional measures of well-being”. And for Finland, not only are the native-born Finns happy, “but their immigrants were also happiest immigrants in the world…It’s not about Finnish DNA. It’s the way life is lived in those countries”, Helliwell notes. And even though the residents pay much more when it comes to taxes, they have a lot of faith in the country and the opportunities it provides them both socially and economically.

The other four countries in the list including Denmark, Norway, Iceland, and the Netherlands don’t have a huge difference in happiness ranking from each other, and even the other three including Switzerland, Sweden and New Zealand don’t have a huge gap either, which is why these countries tend to shift in rank from year to year. The only semi-drastic change was Austria’s shift to number 10, kicking Australia to number 11. Are you surprised by this year’s results?

Top 10 happiest countries in the world in order:

1. Finland
2. Denmark
3. Norway
4. Iceland
5. Netherlands
6. Switzerland
7. Sweden
8. New Zealand
9. Canada
10. Austria

Want to learn more? Click here to read the full report.