Most Livable Cities in the World

It's unlikely a coincidence that the most livable cities in the world received perfect scores for both their healthcare and their education.

It’s unlikely a coincidence that the most livable cities in the world received perfect scores for their healthcare and their education.

Around the world there has been a long-term decline in livability scores, due to hotspots of instability around the world, according to The Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Liveability Ranking.

This year’s report showed little change among the top 10 most livable cities, which are rated on 5 broad categories: healthcare, stability, culture and environment, education, and infrastructure.

"Liveability trends tend to move slowly, so it is unsurprising to see little or no movement among the top ranked cities,” Jon Copestake, editor of the survey, said in a statement. “But destabilization has had a catastrophic impact for some cities with a possible knock-on effect in neighboring countries."

The top-ranked cities tend to be mid-sized cities in wealthier countries with relatively low population density, according to the report. The majority of the list is comprised of cities in Australia and Canada, while top cities around the world like New York, Paris, and London, failed to make the top 10 at all.

10. Auckland, New Zealand

Overall rating: 95.7

Healthcare: 95.8

Stability: 95

Culture/environment: 97

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 92.9

Central Business District

Auckland is the only city in the top 10 that did not receive a perfect 100 for its healthcare. With 1.4 million people (as of June 2013), the city accounts for roughly a third of the country’s entire population.

9. Perth, Australia

Overall rating: 95.9

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 95

Culture/environment: 88.7

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 100

Copyright JJ Harrison

Just the first of many Australian cities, Perth’s biggest flaw was its ranking for culture and environment, which was the lowest score among the entire top 10. Nearly 2 million people live in Perth, making it the fourth-largest city in Australia.

8. Helsinki, Finland

Overall rating: 96

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 100

Culture/environment: 90

Education: 91.7

Infrastructure: 96.4

Katajanokka neighborhood

Helsinki is the only city in the top 10 that did not receive a perfect score for its education, but it was one of just 2 to receive a 100 for stability. Slightly more than 600,000 people live in Helsinki.

7. Sydney, Australia

Overall rating: 96.1

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 90

Culture/environment: 94.4

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 100

David Iliff license CC-BY-SA 3.0

With a population of more than 4.7 million, Sydney has the second-largest population out of the top 10 cities. With so many people, it’s a good thing the city’s infrastructure is considered ideal.

5. (tied) Calgary, Canada

Overall rating: 96.6

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 100

Culture/environment: 89.1

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 96.4

Downtown

Calgary, a city of just a million people, received a score of 100 on 3 different categories, and was one of just 3 cities to receive a perfect score for stability. However, the city had one of the lower culture and environment scores.

5. (tied) Adelaide, Australia

Overall rating: 96.6

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 95

Culture/environment: 94.2

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 96.4

Convention center on the River Torrens

Yet another, though not the last, Australian city in the top 10. Adelaide’s population of 1.3 million makes it the fifth most populous city in the country.

4. Toronto, Canada

Overall rating: 97.2

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 100

Culture/environment: 97.2

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 89.3

Toronto received the lowest score among the other 10 most livable cities, but it was one of just 3 cities to receive a perfect score for stability. Plus, it had the second-highest score for culture and environment.

3. Vancouver, Canada

Overall rating: 97.3

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 95

Culture/environment: 100

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 92.9

MagnusL3D | Flickr

Vancouver is the only city in the top 10 to receive a perfect 100 for its culture and environment, which might not be surprising for a city that is one of the largest film production centers in North America and known as Hollywood North.

2. Vienna, Austria

Overall rating: 97.4

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 95

Culture/environment: 94.4

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 100

Photo by Fabian Lackner

This only category that this city of 1.8 million people score lower on than the top city was culture and environment. Vienna also ranked second last year.

1. Melbourne, Australia

Overall rating: 97.5

Healthcare: 100

Stability: 95

Culture/environment: 95.1

Education: 100

Infrastructure: 100

Southbank. Photo by Donald Y. Tong

Melbourne has topped the ranking for 4 years in a row. In total, Australia had 4 cities in the top 10, all of which scored 100 on healthcare and education. With a population of 4.3 million, Melbourne is also the most populous city, by far, in the top 10.