Vienna Austria Is The Best City

Saturday, June 20, 2009, 9:12 AM | Leave Comment

Vienna, Austria which scores highest for overall quality of living, Baghdad the lowest, according to a research paper “Mercer’s 2009 Quality of Living survey highlights – Global” done by Mercer, a wholly owned subsidiary of Marsh & McLennan Companies, Inc. The researchers state that European cities dominate the top of the ranking whereas Singapore ranks top for city infrastructure; London ranks eighth.

The quality of living rankings are based on a point-scoring index, which sees Vienna score 108.6, and Baghdad 14.4. Cities are ranked against New York as the base city with an index score of 100. [I was not expecting Baghdad to score so high. At least, it’s better than zero. ]

Mercer’s Quality of Living ranking covers 215 cities and is conducted to help governments and major companies place employees on international assignments.

In 2008, the quality of living in many regions has been affected. This is demonstrated by serious political turmoil, increasing unrest and instability, health and climatic concerns. The global financial crisis has intensified in 2008, becoming an area of increasing international concern. The effects of various rescue plans being implemented are yet to be known.

As a result of the current financial crisis, multinationals are looking to review their international assignment policies with a view to cutting costs. Many companies plan to reduce the number of medium to long-term international assignments and localize their expatriate compensation packages where possible though the hardship allowance, based on quality of living criteria, will remain an essential component of the package.

What’s wrong with this picture?
None of the top 5 cities in the world belong to the United States. But aren’t we living in the best country of the world. Well, I guess that’s not right. Looking closer, I found Atlanta, GA USA (15th) and Washington D.C, USA among the top 5 cities regarding infrastructure.

The lowest ranking American city in the top 50 was Seattle (50th) so far as the quality of one’s living. The surprising item for me is that top 5 cities regarding quality of living are situated in Asia and Africa.

Is America losing it? Can we regain the old status? Some say United States is still the best country in the world – regarding what? Can we believe Mercer’s survey completely? Is it an unbiased report?

For the full article, read Mercer’s 2009 Quality of Living survey highlights – Global.

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