A new ranking of the best countries shows that the United States has fallen three spots to seventh place. The ranking, which was released on Tuesday by US News & World Report in partnership with the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and global brand consultants BAV Consulting, show the Unites States has lost its position as fourth best among world’s best countries while Switzerland debuted at No. 1. Switzerland won first place partly because of its progressive social systems, protection of human rights and business-friendly environment. Notably, it’s one of five countries in the top 15 that are run by women: No. 1 Switzerland, No. 3 U.K., No. 4 Germany, No. 10 Norway and No. 12. Denmark.
More than 50% of survey respondents think the world has gotten worse in the last year, and more than 60% agree that there is a leadership crisis in today’s world. The rankings evaluate 80 countries across a range of criteria, from power and economic influence to citizenship and quality of life, to capture how nations are perceived on a global scale.
Overall, the top five countries are:
Among the 21,000 surveyed, 75% said they lost some respect for US leadership after the 2016 presidential election.
The United States ranked lower than past years across multiple categories, including best for business, citizenship, adventure tourism, education, transparency and headquartering a corporation. However, the country remained No. 1 on the list of most powerful countries closely followed by Russia and China.
Nearly 90% of global survey respondents outside of the US reported that they paid attention to the 2016 US presidential election. Hillary Clinton would have won the global election, with nearly 60% of the global vote. In Russia, support for Donald Trump was highest at 84 % and in China at 54%.
“We wanted to capture how tumultuous political change can affect a country’s perceived standing in the world,” said Brian Kelly, editor and chief content officer of US News, in a news release. “Similar to what we have done with hospitals, universities and other institutions, the Best Countries portal pairs fact-based metrics with storytelling to help citizens, business leaders and governments better evaluate their countries and make sense of a range of important global issues.”
Last year’s No. 1 best overall country, Germany, slipped to No. 4 after its performance in three important categories: open for business, citizenship and quality of life.