HomeGlobal 360Urban Utopia: Unveiling the World's Most Liveable Cities for 2024

Urban Utopia: Unveiling the World’s Most Liveable Cities for 2024

It’s considered among the most beautiful cities in the world to visit, and it seems that Vienna may also be an unbeatable place to live.

The Austrian city has been crowned the most liveable city in the world yet again in the annual list from the Economist Intelligence Unit (EIU), which was released today.

The EIU, a sister organization to The Economist, ranked 173 cities across the globe on a number of significant factors, including health care, culture and environment, stability, infrastructure and education.

Vienna topped the list for the third consecutive year, receiving “perfect” scores in four out of five of the categories — the city was marked lower for culture and environment due to an apparent lack of significant sporting events.

Perfect scores

Just behind the Austrian capital, Denmark’s Copenhagen retained its second place position, while Switzerland’s Zurich moved up from sixth place to third on the list.

Swiss city Zurich scored impeccably in the education and health care categories. (Gaetan Bally/Zürich Tourismus via CNN Newsource)

Australia’s Melbourne fell from third to fourth place, while Canadian city Calgary tied for fifth place with Swiss city Geneva.

Canada’s Vancouver and Australia’s Sydney were in joint seventh place, and Japan’s Osaka and New Zealand’s Auckland rounded out the top 10 in joint ninth place.

Vancouver ranks No. 7 on this year’s list. (Drazen Zigic/iStockphoto/Getty Images via CNN Newsource)

While Western Europe performed well, with 30 cities scoring an average score of 92 out of 100, the region saw an overall decline in stability scores, which was attributed to “increasing instances of disruptive protests” and crime.

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In 23rd place, Honolulu, Hawaii was the highest US city on the list, while Atlanta, Georgia moved up four places to number 29.

Los Angeles was further down the list in 58th place, while New York came in at No. 70.

‘Acute housing crisis’

North America achieved the highest average score for education. However, marks for infrastructure were lower than the previous year in Canada due to “an acute housing crisis,” which has affected several regions.

Canada’s Toronto dropped out of the top 10 most liveable cities list this year, coming in 12th. (Destination Toronto via CNN Newsource)

“The situation is particularly worrying in Australia and Canada, where the availability of rental properties is at an all-time low and purchase prices have continued to rise despite interest-rate increases,” reads the report.

Vancouver fell backwards while remaining in the top 10, and Toronto (ninth on the list in 2023) dropped out of the top 10 to 12th place.

UK capital London was ranked as the 45th most liveable city in the world.

Over in Asia, Hong Kong saw the largest score improvement since last year, climbing from 61st place to 50th thanks to an improvement in its stability and health care scores.

UAE cities saw some of the biggest score increases this year, with Abu Dhabi and Dubai climbing up the list, and Saudi Arabia’s Riyadh, Jeddah and Al Khobar also making significant gains.

Meanwhile, Israel’s Tel Aviv experienced one of the biggest declines, dropping 20 places to 112th due to the Israel-Hamas war.

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Stability decline

“Global liveability has risen fractionally over the past year but risks to stability remain,”  said Barsali Bhattacharyya, deputy industry director at EIU.

“Still-high inflation accompanied by high interest rates and other economic headwinds led to another year of frequent protests across the world.”

There was little change at the bottom of the list, with Damascus, Syria still ranking as the least liveable in the world, with Libya’s Tripoli, Algeria’s Algiers and Nigeria’s Lagos ranking just above.

The study noted that none of the bottom four cities had seen any improvement in its overall score since 2023.

“Since we conducted our survey, there have been more instances of civil unrest and demonstrations around the world, such as the campus protests across the US, suggesting continuing stress on liveability that is unlikely to ease in the near future,” said Bhattacharyya.

2024’s Global Liveability Index: The top 10

1. Vienna, Austria

2. Copenhagen, Denmark

3. Zurich, Switzerland

4. Melbourne, Australia

5. Calgary, Canada

5. Geneva, Switzerland

7. Sydney, Australia

7. Vancouver, Canada

9. Osaka, Japan

9. Auckland, New Zealand

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