Sorry, Melbourne, you’re no longer the world’s most liveable city



The EIU just released their comprehensive Global Liveability Index for 2018 and yep, that’s the one that’s ranked Melbourne as the world’s most liveable city for the last seven years…until now…

In the Economist Intelligence Unit’s Global Liveability Index, 140 cities are ranked on their quality of life based on 30 qualitative and quantitive factors over the categories of stability, healthcare, culture/environment, education and infrastructure. 

These categories look at aspects of living and lifestyle including crime rate, terrorism threat, access and quality of private and public private healthcare, access and quality of private and public education, climate, food and drink, activities, quality of roads and public transport, and much more. Each factor is rated as acceptable, tolerable, uncomfortable, undesirable or intolerable and scores are calculated and weighted on a scale of 1-100 with 1 being intolerable and 100 being ideal. 

The index provides overall results as well as results per category for each city and has a broad number of uses such as government research, insights for expatriation packages, and perhaps most importantly, bragging rights for locals.

The Ten Most Liveable Cities


While the Top 10 is usually dominated by Australian, Japanese and Canadian cities, this is the first time Vienna has ranked at number 1 since the index’s current iteration beginning in 2004, scoring an overall ranking of 99.1 out of 100. Melbourne follows at number 2 (98.4), Sydney comes in at number 5 (97.4) and the City of Churches aka Radelaide at number 10 (96.6). 

Melbourne and Vienna both scored 100 in healthcare, education and infrastructure, but outranking the Austrian city in culture and environment was countered by increased stability across Europe, as well as Vienna’s lower crime rate. 

The Ten Least Liveable Cities


At the other end of the scale, many of the lowest ranked cities including Damascus at 140 are located in less affluent countries, many of which are currently experiencing civil unrest or political instability. In turn, this instability has had a rippling effect on liveability, negatively impacting on quality of life. 

Though stability has improved across the globe, the EIU stresses that as the index is largely a comparative one, rankings are often dependent on the improvements and declines in the liveability of other cities.